AJ Cheponis

Joined April 2020
Every organization needs great people and great leaders. Yet, nearly every company I talk to is experiencing some sort of challenge around hiring and recruiting right now.

“It’s really hard to find great people right now, Zach.”

Trust me, I feel you. Even we at IMPACT have experienced the pain of the “Great Resignation.” It’s not that great people aren’t out there, it’s just taking about 3 times as long to find them.

Fact is, though, it’s high time we all take a closer look at exactly HOW we go about attracting these people - starting with our communication on the front end.
Of course I’m talking….job postings.
Three things we’ve noticed will make a radical difference in both the quality and amount of applicants you attract in your... See More
AJ Cheponis
Hi Zach, 

You’re absolutely correct; every organization needs great people. 

I know you might be taken back by this statement – but here it goes. It’s not hard to find, hire and keep great people – they are all around us. 

Unfortunately, how we fundamentally go about looking for people is massively flawed.  

We write ads based on things that “mostly” don’t matter. We talk about technical details, experience, education, and so on. Then we look for keywords on a resume that have no relevance or correlation to job performance and choose to interview certain people. 

BTW, your job history or “what you’ve done” is not an indicator of job fit or job performance. And if you were curious, education plays an almost nonexistent (1.1%) role in predicting job performance. 

When most organizations interview, they have no framework in place and lack an unbiased way to rank people. They ask questions based on history and experience and play in the hypothetical “what if” arena and make biased judgments on what they hear. Then to make matters worse, they end up hiring the applicant they “like” the most or worse, a person who did a similar job somewhere else. 

It’s a proven recipe for churn, decreased culture, poor performance, and disengagement.


While your three ideas aren’t bad, it still doesn’t get to the desired result of attracting, hiring, and keeping engaged, happy, productive team members.


 The key to making phenomenal hires revolves around Job Fit – is the person a “natural” fit for the role. Experience, age, education, identity aside; is the person a behavioral and cognitive match for the demands of the role? 

Once we know this vital information, only then do we proceed to interview. Frankly, the people you’d be interviewing at this point could all perform the job at a high level. Where most of your interview energy is spent will be on passion, purpose, values, and cultural fit. 


I’m sure you and many of your readers will have questions as I’ve left out a ton of details – I didn’t want to turn this into a 3,000-word reply. 😊  Feel free to reach out to me anytime and I’d be happy to dig in deeper with anyone frustrated with trying to find, hire and keep incredible talent. It is completely solvable. I can be reached at  aj@straightline.consulting and will respond as quickly as possible.  Thanks!