As per foundersguide, a survey finds that there were 543,000 startups in the US every month. 19.4 million non-employer businesses was a sole proprietorship, 1.6 million were partnerships and 1.4 million were corporations. And this trend only seems to be rising. Having a strong idea or a great product does not guarantee the success of a startup. Ultimately the fate of your venture rests on the shoulders of your team members.
Amidst tackling cash flows and choosing the fittest investors, the founder must have a great interpersonal skill to manage the business and motivate the team. Not everyone can be Tim Westergren, founder of Pandora nor Dan Cristo, founder of Triberr. Their startups succeeded because of their super efficient team and they formed one because of perfect hiring plan. The perfect mix of right team members and an apt leader paves the way for success. If you too are a startup or looking to start one, listed below are few points that you could consider while hiring for your startup.
The Hiring Assessment
While hiring you ought to be clear of three things, when is the perfect timing to start hiring, how many and what role you expect them to fulfill. Thus, decide the right time and formulate the correct plan for expansion. Better to do some job requirement evaluation. A detailed breakdown is given below:
- Timing: Unplanned hiring not only incurs the loss but wrong time hiring can be a great financial pain. Ask yourself are you planning to be as lean as possible. Is hiring a feasible option at the moment or should you choose to outsource?
- Manpower: You need to be clear on the number of manpower that you intend to hire based on the current need and the stage of your startup. You may decide on contractual versus full-time assignments.
- Specification of position: When you start hiring always add on specifics of the position that you want to hire for. Be clear about whether it is a technical position or administrative position that you are seeking a candidate for. Prepare a concise job description for the available position as well as an overview of additional responsibilities that you are expecting. Create a JD by highlighting qualities you expect, roles and responsibilities, years of experience and salary package.
Where To Look For
Once you have mapped down the things you need and things you do not, it is time to search for candidates. The question arises is from where? The specification has already been done, now align your company profile, describe your startup’s environment, facilities, mission and benefits. Do not mislead, include the range an employee could expect from your startup. Post your job opening on job board sites LinkedIn, Glassdoor, and Indeed. You could also take advantage of niche sites specifically for startup jobs, like Angel.co, Angellist, Underdog, VentureLoop, Crunchboard, Hacker news, Join-Startups and many more. Online communities such as Behance, Quora, Stack Exchange and more also enables to meet with highly talented people. Other than these popular portals, spread a word in your network via social media, this can have a quite profound result. Options are plenty and you would get many resumes, it all comes down to your selection process, that determines the type of team member you end up hiring.
Screening candidates might be monotonous but highly essential. If you have received too many applications than prioritize and put your energy on only top applicants. Thereafter, evaluate the shortlisted candidates. Next, you can plan a skype call or phonic interview. This would help you to analyse whether conducting face to face interview is worthy or not. Ask him about his aspirations, salary expectation, test his communication skills also you should highlight your startup as an attractive and pleasant career choice. By the time, you would have a clear idea of candidates that really qualifies for face to face interview and the list is obviously narrowed down. During this stage, apart from an F2F interview, startups must refine the profiles as below:
- Plan up few rounds, each one planned on certain specification aligning your job requirements
- A well-planned assessment test, based on role specification, this cannot be the only criteria but it is a standard one and gives you a clarity about the candidate
- Try out different strategies like practical test ask them to suggest on a project that you are presently working. This could help you determine the presence of mind …on how he/she behaves in a certain situation or how he/she performs under this situation.
- Plan up a team meet with other co-founders or existing members, it will help you to determine how easily the candidate can zeal with other team members, for startups it is quite vital
- Trick him into doing multiple things this would test his ability of multitasking
- Query about his experiences, a complete brief of projects handled this would help to get an insight on whether he jumps from one to another too often or not
- Ask him to give a brief of a challenging project that he has solved completely on his calibre and expertise
- Ask him about his hobby this could help in establishing a rapoo outside work
- Query about their long term plan. How they want to see themselves in coming years. You and your employees long-term plan need to be aligned
Avoid Hasty Decisions
Hiring the wrong guy would not only inflict loss of money but also eat up your most precious resource, time and effort. Firstly, you need to avoid money honkers, they are first one to divulge. Look for passion, some with persistence. Avoid theorists and look for practical people, someone who not only sits and orders but rather executes.
In Spite of being time-consuming, the selection processes and criteria should be as refined as possible. The first few employees that you select are very critical for the long run you have planned and for dreams, you intended to fulfill. Recruit the absolute best you can find and take your time. Keeping all these above-mentioned points in mind you can hardly go wrong. Go build a team!