Boss looking to hire someone that is going to be shit

Background: work in AM for a brand name shop that has just stepped in to a niche market, they hired a full team to access this market, I was hired 2 months ago from a different shop. 

Due to growth my boss is going to hire someone that will report in to me and take over a lot of the admin work I'm responsible for atm. He said he "had someone in mind" so he obviously knows this person (Nepotism probably).

The CV (Resume) landed on my desk today - their experience is in a completely unrelated industry, no degree (they have an accounting qualification), poor grammar, and if I even assume a conservative 20% of the projects/work on this two page atrocity are bullshit, we're in trouble. 

Point is, this person will report in to me. I'm going to have to explain how this niche market works and its going to take a year for them to come up the curve. And although they'll be taking the low-touch monotonous stuff, it's not trivial work at all, if they fuck up it will fall back on me. 

Interview is next week, if it goes how I expect it to go and if my boss is still keen on them, how do I convince them not to hire this person without potentially burning bridges with my boss or sounding like a dick ? Hopefully they pull it out of the bag and prove me wrong to avoid this. 

Anyone had a similar situation?

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Comments (18)

  • Associate 1 in VC
Sep 10, 2021 - 1:49pm

That sucks. But what if you give the kid a chance and it turns out he's great. It's admin work everyone starts somewhere. People like this who come in can be surprisingly good workers and value adds in the long run and on top of it grateful to people who took a chance on them over the "vanilla" wealth mgt intern-> IB intern kid. If he does suck ask for a raise for sure. I hope the interview goes well dude.

Most Helpful
Sep 10, 2021 - 1:51pm

Treat the interview seriously so that it's not just a meet and greet. Be direct about the key deliverables, skills and outcomes needed to make the role successful - and that candidate should be able to directly tie out their experience and/or skills to those. Afterward deliver your assessment directly to your boss. If you are professional about it, that's about the best you can do. Just be sure to highlight some strengths or competencies (I'd do that up front) and then tie the rest out to what it will take for you, your boss and the team to be successful. 

I'm assuming you aren't actually running the hiring process otherwise you might offer up some resumes you think would make a better fit, as that always has a way of helping out. 

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Sep 10, 2021 - 2:00pm

Great points. I'm thinking about this the wrong way, as if they already have the job and this will just be a laid back chat. Thanks for this perspective. 

Sep 10, 2021 - 1:51pm

Give them a skills test.  Pretty simple, if they are required for example to assemble deal docs, prep the data room, do initial deck assembly, etc. then make them do that and create an output.  If its good and they do okay in the interview then you can hire them but let the boss know that you can't babysit them.  If the candidate fails then you can show the boss the work and say look, this just isn't acceptable and I won't make myself responsible for this level of inneptitude.  

You have to be fair in your review however, you can't expect them to know exactly how to do the work day 1.  Remember you were once an idiot who didn't know anything about your role as well.

Sep 10, 2021 - 8:11pm

Interview the kid seriously and if he/she sucks then be honest with your boss that you'd recommend passing and widening the search. If you say that and the boss in insistent on trying to make it work then clearly the kid has an in you can't really fight. 

If that's the case and the kid gets hired, just try and be as constructive as you can and assume that he/she isn't incompetent so that you can give them a fair shot. If they underperform consistently after that, then yes you'll be between a rock and a hard place. You should make it abundantly clear to your boss that your report sucks and maybe recommend keeping them within the firm but in a different role or something. I feel like if you're at an asset manager and have a competent boss, the primary focus will be on delivering good work and results so hopefully you don't see too much resistance there. Keep us updated as I've seen this happen once and the kid eventually got fired despite the relationship.

  • 5
Sep 13, 2021 - 9:34am

Look im not sure which country you're in, but if it is the same as mine, then the accounting qualification is definitely seen as a plus in sell side research at least. He may be worth a shot, give it a look and if the vibe is rlly off in the interview, be candid to your boss.

If they still get hired, then you'll at least know it's nepotism and then you can act accordingly

Sep 13, 2021 - 10:49am

Ok interview was sprung on me this morning. My boss explained that we didn't have a budget for a specialist when I voiced my concern over him learning the market. I think I'll keep ownership of the stuff that can really go wrong. 

Sep 13, 2021 - 2:24pm

I have been in this situation twice. One dude could barely do the work and I had to spend extra time out of my day teaching him and he wouldn't take notes even though I told him to take notes to remember. He kept messaging me how to do stuff I just told him and I couldn't get my work done till he left at 5pm everyday and he would ask "do you need any help with anything?" I'd say no and then when he left I could finally get some work done.

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

  • 1
Sep 13, 2021 - 2:48pm

Haha yeah it was a bakery factory - big operation 

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

Sep 14, 2021 - 4:01pm

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