Trust but Verify
Ronald Reagan gave us this quote, and it is a reality in a world full of “reality TV.” We all know that wrestling is staged, and we know that reality TV is a whole lot of made-up stuff too. We choose to enjoy these things anyway, but we do so with a knowing that it’s not real.
We all want to live in a world where we feel that we can trust people around us. Those of us who are business owners or managers are tasked with managing through delegation to others. Especially after a number of years we come to know and trust long time employees. Unfortunately, a short-circuit can develop in this trust conduit. Your trust is abused in ways that can be quite costly.
Pre-hire Background Checks
Corporations and even small businesses have become accustomed to doing background checks on job applicants and new hires. Some do a simple Internet search, others hire firms like Kimmons Investigative Services, Inc. to do thorough checks, and many do something in between. This is an effective approach to avoid hiring the wrong person. But, we all know that life changes, and business changes right along with it. Five years from now, will that employee you checked at hire still be the same person with nothing negative in their background?
Too many businesses have found out the hard way that change is happening all around them, and their employees are experiencing life changes that can dramatically alter their personalities or what they feel they must do to survive in their new world. Financial adversity has changed many employees from loyal and honest into petty thieves or far worse. Companies with trade secrets or sensitive information are particularly vulnerable if their competition offers incentives to struggling employees to share that information.
Scheduled Ongoing Background Checks
In our business it is not uncommon to sit across the boardroom conference table talking to a shocked executive who just found out through our investigation that a trusted employee has been stealing from them for some time. Many times it is someone who has been with the company for a decade or more. The more you have to protect, the more you need to hire professionals to do scheduled background checks of existing employees, even middle and upper management.
By scheduled we don’t mean advertised. We are scheduled to periodically conduct these employee background checks, but the schedule is secret and if nothing derogatory is found, your employees need never know about them. It is just sound business practice that can save you far more than it costs. Sometimes it can save a company.
Trust but verify.