You’ve got a vision but you’re going to need a team. Hiring your first set of employees takes more than a LinkedIn account and a dream, but we’re here to simplify the process so you assemble the dream team of visionaries who can drive your startup goals.
In our mind, soft skills will always be the priority. You want team members who have a solid work ethic, resilience, flexibility and motivation. Enthusiasm is hard to fake and those who genuinely believe in your mission despite it’s challenges and obstacles will make your team, a dream.
Hiring Process Matters
If you’ve never hired before, getting a vision for what you need and the roles & responsibilities required will put you steps ahead of the competition. Knowing the skills necessary for your startup makes creating job descriptions for recruitment a breeze.
Define the roles and responsibilities you are looking to hire for.
Networking is your startup’s best asset when it comes to hiring. “Birds of a feather flock together” is a real thing and the hardworking talent you are seeking, is likely hanging out with or connected to others just like them.
Put yourself out there on LinkedIn and social media. Are you networking with people relevant to your field? Connected to recruiters and communities that may share a talent pool you seek? Are you attending events like meetups and hackathons to hire fresh talent looking for a project to fall in love with?
Promote your people. Make them rockstars of your startup so they become well-known and share about their success with you. Like attracts like and your badass humans are deeply interconnected… likely to your next hire.
Rally the troops and make everyone on the team part of your “recruitment division”. Since you likely cant yet afford a recruiter, have those on the ground looking, networking and connecting with humans who might become your next great asset.
Have a system. Rare talent is likely being recruited from multiple sources. If you’re disorganized and haphazard with your hiring process, their likely to be scooped up by someone else in the meantime. Don’t let disorganization steal them away to your competition. Take care of your candidates and nurture them!
Is your brand sexy? Divisive? Disrupting? Inspiring? Does it solve a problem people want to be part of? Startups suffer, often, from a branding problem. Since the only real attraction most have upfront is you and your team, it’s essential to make sure your personal brand is attractive.
Keep your social media and LinkedIn profiles clear and up to date. Engage. Connect. Be social. Share the highlights of the work you are doing, your mission and why. Never be afraid to reveal your passion as it will be the thing to act as a homing beacon to your new recruits.
Build Diversity Into Your Core Team
The startup phase isn’t forever but a reputation can be. Start yourself off by looking longterm and building a diverse team that represents you and your mission both internally and externally. While this can be choosing roles like product design, customer service, marketing, sales and operations this is also about the humans you choose for these roles. Diversity and inclusion matter.
Consider both the longterm and shortterm goals of your company and consider the functions necessary to give it life while also recognizing it may need to change in order to grow and scale into the future.
Candidate Experience Counts
If you’re dealing with Rare Talent your candidate experience is everything. Every experience from recruitment to hire and training should be thoughtful, and organized.
Some key components that make you stand out to candidates:
* be prompt: don’t waste anyones time
* review resumes thoroughly and timely
* give feedback and ensure it is constructive to help candidates improve
* be authentic and realistic with where you are at and expectations
* find common ground to support your candidate in feeling welcomed
* have a clear process to your hiring and share it with them
Hire for attitude and train for skill. The very best talent will always be unemployed at least once in their professional life; immediately after finishing education. Hiring interns can reveal some serious talent that’s undiscovered… until now.
Look to Colleges & Universities that have programs in place that may even support you in finding and hiring the right candidate straight out of school. You can typically advertise on campus, work with specific internship programs and offer work placements that can turn permanent for the right candidate.
Interns are thirsty for knowledge and opportunity. If you can provide both and become a stepping stone to their career, their more likely to do a great job, truly trying to wow you and become a longterm member of your team.
While interns help get bodies in your business, you always want to be looking longterm with them and utilizing the skills they have, while helping them learn and build on the skills you want them to have. This is an investment in your business longterm.
Use Recruitment Software & Tools
AdvisoryClub, of course is a recruitment tool we recommend for all startups looking to hire the rare talent in the marketplace. That said, software and tools allow us as business owners to step out of our own biases and instead hire the best, brightest and most capable for our business dream team.
However you choose to hire, having a solid plan for the hiring, and employing some best-practices around your hires will go a long way to attracting rare talent and building your dream team.