I built multiple $100M+ companies.
The #1 impact lever? Hiring top talent.
13 tips to hire the right people every time:
Don't Outsource Recruiting
Shipping useful products requires A+ teams.
The founder has to do the heavy recruiting lift early on.
Stay involved long-term in a way that scales.
Absent founders build average teams.
Outbound Recruiting > Inbound
Don't wait for people to come to you, go to them.
Startups need to compress time.
The best way to do this?
Proactively acquire the best talent possible.
Don't wait and hope they apply on your website.
Dominate Your Cold Outreach
Cold email gives you access to any candidate in the world.
A carefully crafted message can:
My current cold emails can convert to 1st round interviews ~70% of the time.
Give Candidates a Purpose
Top talent are mission-driven.
They want to work on something meaningful.
Clearly connect them with your Mission, Vision and Values.
At Archer, I laid this out in our Master Plan.
Check it out here for reference:
Connect "A" Talent with "A" Talent
It's hard to attract A players if you have B players on the team.
The best want to learn from others smarter than them.
Set the bar for your company astronomically high.
Top talent will follow.
Make Recruiting a Two-Way Sales Game
Job seekers have a lot of options.
You're selling the candidate as much as they're selling you.
The goal of the first interview:
Get the candidate excited about joining.
Do that, and you'll convert well.
Hire Your Replacement
Large corporate execs hire people who aren't threats to take their job.
At startups, do the opposite.
Creating products from scratch requires the best people.
If your team feels like a threat to your job, you're doing it right.
Build Reply Rebuttals
You can convert ~50% of candidates who respond “not interested right now."
Strong reply rebuttals.
Express both the importance & upside of the project.
Any return response is an opportunity to sell the candidate.
Build a Plan First
Before you recruit anyone, build an org chart.
It should include:
• number of open roles
• key responsibilities
• reporting structure
• skills needed
• job titles
Recruit to fill that chart.
Winging it will cost a lot of time and money.
Feed Candidates Information
Interviews are more effective when you share info ahead of time.
Share documents that describe the company and the interviewers.
Ex: I send my personal bio so candidates can learn more about the companies I've built
In-person meetings convert candidates far more effectively than virtual ones.
If the candidate isn’t local, fly them out to be on-site.
No companies do this now, giving you a competitive advantage.
Getting an A+ hire is worth the investment.
Recruiting Is a Marketing Funnel
Recruiting is no different than sales or marketing.
You do lead-generation at the top of the funnel.
Then, you work to optimize conversion from 1st round to offer acceptance.
Run your recruiting process with the same rigor and organization.
A few things to do in Week 1:
• Review company goals and role expectations
• Pair new hires with an experienced employee
• Introduce them to every person in their division
• Have them review all major decision documents
Onboarding sets the tone.
These lessons came from my experience building Archer (Went public at $2.7B) and Vettery (acquired for $100M).
Follow me @adcock_brett for more.
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