Lessons of the square watermelon!

Maybe this story about square watermelons will make you challenge the way you currently recruit and performance manage your people!

If nothing else you will be asking yourself “Is there a better way?
Japanese grocery stores had a problem, as they are much smaller than Australian supermarkets, they really don't have any room to waste. This dilemma of wasted space was very much epitomised by the humble watermelon. Being big and round, or even worse also big and oval, they wasted a lot of space.
Now, most people would simply tell the grocery stores that watermelons grow round and there is nothing that can be done about it!

That is exactly how the vast majority of people would respond. But some Japanese farmers took a different approach. If the supermarkets wanted a square watermelon they asked themselves, "How can we provide one?" It wasn't long before they invented the square watermelon.

The solution to the problem of round watermelons wasn't nearly as difficult to solve for those who didn't assume the problem was impossible to begin with and simply asked how it could be done. It turns out that all you need to do is place them into a square box when they are growing and the watermelon will take on the shape of the box.



This made the grocery stores happy and had the added benefit that it was much easier and cost effective to ship the watermelons. Consumers also loved them because they took less space in their refrigerators which are much smaller than those in Australia, meaning that the growers could charge a premium price for them.



What does this have to do with anything besides square watermelons

For decades organisations have been using resumes, references and interviews to select candidates principally based on their educational qualifications and experience. The only problem with this time honoured approach is that:


  • Greater than 60% of resumes contain blatant untruth
  • Most referees will not provide an honest and accurate opinion of a past employee due to the risk of legal action
  • Educational qualifications have been proven to not be a reliable or statistical predictor of future high performance for most roles
  • Experience is a relative concept. “20 years experience” could quite simply be 52 weeks of sub-standard performance repeated 20 times.

By not continually questioning your current recruitment and performance management processes, you could well run the risk of missing opportunities that would have delivered increased revenue, profit, customer service levels and business growth


When there are quantifiable studies that prove by incorporating Peoplogica JobFit assessments into existing processes organisations can achieve the following outcomes:


  • Average ROI is $26.30 returned for every dollar invested
  • Up to a 300% increase in the success rate of selecting future high performers
  • Average reduction in early failure rate is 46%
  • Average reduction in employee turnover is 47%
  • In all study cases where assessments were used within the sales team, sales increased as a result
Why is it that there are still managers who are fully satisfied with round watermelons?
There is a better way!
If you would like to know more about JobFit assessments, Interview Guides and Management/Coaching reports to increase productivity and workplace engagement, please contact us on (02) 9936 9000 or info@peoplogica.com