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“If companies made acquisitions the way they select leaders, then a handshake would count as due diligence.” This quote appeared in a recent Fortune Magazine article introducing a new book by Ram Charan, Know How: The Eight Skills that Separate People Who Perform From Those Who Don’t.  What Charan proposes is that “reputations are indicators, not facts,” and that often executives being considered for key positions are not sufficiently vetted, and their actual performance is not what it was said to be. Granted, everyone tries to paint their career accomplishments in the best light, but, all too often, I have observed that liberties taken can go beyond  fact.  Couple this with a lack of due diligence, and you may be in for a big disappointment in your new hire.  It is critical that recruiters and hiring managers dig deep when evaluating a candidate to flesh out the specifics in his or her record, to make sure that you are hiring the “real deal.”

Tony LoPinto is CEO of Equinox Partners, an executive search firm specializing in the real estate industry, and parent company of SelectLeaders. The views expressed in this article are the author’s own.

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