6 Tips to Succeed at Startup Recruiting

Startup RecruitingIf you’re recruiting a team for your startup venture, you probably have an ideal type of employee in mind. It’s possible that the type of employee who’s a great catch for a large corporation isn’t the one you want on your team – and it’s possible that the people you want on your startup team won’t be attracted by the same things as people who want to work at established companies.

The biggest challenge for startups is finding the right people. It’s crucial to find people that have the skills, motivation, flexibility, and attitude to succeed in a variable, fast paced, and frenetic work environment.

Startups are not usually in a position to offer the high salaries, predictable hours, job security, benefit packages and perks that established companies can. You’ll have to work to find people who embrace challenges, and are willing to make big sacrifices for greater success down the road.

Below, we’ve put together a list of tips for succeeding at startup recruiting:

1. Write a hyper-focused job description

Your startup probably doesn’t have the resources to pay an executive recruiting agency to find the right people, so you’re going to have to take a grassroots approach. Therefore, the more detailed and articulate your job description, the more likely you’ll be to attract the people you want. Targeting passive candidates could be the way to go in this situation. They tend to have the qualifications, experience and characteristics that startups require to build a strong team.

2. Look for entrepreneurs

Unless an applicant has a compelling reason for wanting to work in a startup, they might lack the creativity, drive, vision and resourcefulness you’re looking for. An easy starting point is to look for people who already have entrepreneurial experience – and don’t forget to ask about their own startup projects.

3. Hire versatile people

Rather than hiring someone with a fixed skill set, look for a jack-of-all-trades. You want intellectually curious fast learners who aren’t afraid of leaving their comfort zones. Populate your startup team with flexible, multifaceted people who are willing to take on a variety of tasks, and watch your talented staff grow off of itself.

4. Interview recent college grads

Recent college grads are often willing to take on the extra responsibilities and long hours that a startup business demands for the prospect of a meaningful work experience. They’re also often willing to work for lower salaries, and they’re excited by the prospect of growing with a new company. If you’re not willing to take a chance on someone with little employment history, look for people with around two years of experience who are looking for a new challenge.

5. Find people who want you have

Someone who eventually wants their own startup – or someone who has had a startup that failed – may see your job as a way to learn more about the ins-and-outs of creating a successful venture. These candidates can bring lots of enthusiasm to your startup, because they see it as a learning opportunity. They’re interested in all aspects of the startup process, and they’re willing to do whatever it takes to help the venture succeed. The only downside? Down the road, they’ll probably leave the fold and go out on their own. In the meantime, having them on your team can be incredibly beneficial.

6. Hire independent workers

It takes a special kind of employee to jump right into a business venture and learn as they go. You probably won’t be able to provide extensive training, supervision and support, so look for resourceful people who can figure out what needs to be done and then do it, without a lot of hand-holding.

The right people for your startup will come in all shapes and sizes. Look for talent rather than a specific role. You’ll be better off with people who believe in themselves, think outside the box, enjoy being challenged, and aren’t afraid to take risks.

Zero Fee Recruiter is a new and better way to find great talent.

We are the world’s largest passive candidate marketplace. We provide you with qualified professionals that we have contacted and vetted for each position you are looking to fill. We deliver only candidates that are interested in the position, are available in your location and have agreed to your salary range.

ZFR focuses on passive candidates that we source through our proprietary system, “Reach Out”, and this enables our team to reach candidates that are not actively looking.

We guarantee results! It’s that easy…


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