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3 Key Hiring Tips That Have Stood the Test of Time

Guest Author
28th Aug 2012
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Good To Great is a management book that studied 1435 companies over a span of 40 years and found 11 companies that became great. The book, written by Jim Collins was published in 2001 but the repercussions have wide and pervasive. For a company to be successful, it is no big secret that it needs to have a phenomenal team. Most of the startups currently in India are facing teething problems about how to hire right. Here are the the 3 key people decisions you can 'choose' to make:1) When in doubt, keep looking.

Firstly, never compromise. You can never rely on a hope that he or she might just make the cut. Keep looking. Secondly, the keep looking could take several weeks or months. It is a never ending process. Companies that have been mightily successful never have their doors closed. Always Hiring means 'Always keep looking'.

So, what happens if you find a great person but there is no opening? Simple. Create one.

Jim Collins and his team concluded that while to be good, your business performance can outpace your rate of acquiring good people; to be great, your rate of acquiring good people should outpace everything else in your business. Else, you'll not only hit a plateau but actually decline.

2) When you need to make a people decision, act.

Good is the enemy of great. Colman Mochlar, the ex-CEO of Gillete said, "Every minute devoted to putting the proper person in the proper slot is worth weeks of time later". Not only should you get the right people on board, you should also make sure that you put them at right place as well. When you realize that the fit is not happening, try to move honest and able people around. You don't have an option but to let go off others.

3) Put your best people where your best opportunites are, not where your biggest problems are

The 'right' people should be solving the 'right' problems and not dousing fires. That is one key difference I see in companies that are ranked great to work at, and those that burn people out -> the more productive you are, more you focus on something classified as extremely important for the company / team and not solving urgent issues.

The book uses the analogy of a bus to make the point about hiring very clear. Before deciding where to take the bus, first get the right people on the bus [1], shuffle or remove people so that they are sitting on the right seats [2] and have them debate where to go, and then go [3]! That is correct. Don't decide your strategy before you have the right people on board.

Seemingly obvious tips but when dwelled upon with deliberation, might reveal some of the mistakes that a founder might be making.

About the author: 

Vikrama Dhiman, Scrum India Moderator

(with inputs from Jubin Mehta)

[Recommendations: Do you really need a Technical Co-Founder? And How to Find a Technical Co-Founder?]

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