Hiring: Surround yourself with smarter people than you

Aside from your extensive vision and great ideas, the most essential component for a business is having a good team. You should aim to find people who are not only seeking out a job, but are also people whose beliefs and values correspond with yours. Having this precondition met, they will not only work to obtain a monthly salary, but also aspire to achieve the same goals. Put shortly, shift your focus on hiring motivated and result-orientated people.

Here are some important characteristics you should pay attention to:

  • Adaptability

The COVID-19 period could not have been a better evidence to show us how important this feature is. Your employees have to be willing and able to adapt to changes, take on new responsibilities, or even acquire new skills. When interviewing potential employees, try to ask “what if” and create hypothetical future scenarios. This way you should be able to evaluate both the person’s adaptiveness, but also see how strong the candidate’s vision is.

While adaptability is not the only quality you should look for, it is the one which you as a leader and employer should encourage and build.

  • Exploration

The candidate’s capability and internal need to look for multiple solutions, sources and possibilities, instead of only following established or easier paths which they are used to is another crucial characteristic. The ability to break habits demonstrates that a person is not only willing to learn, but is also brave enough to face and solve problems.

  • Learner

You can’t afford not to have learners on the job. Look for people who are driven to learn, both at work and at home. It is a sustainable competitive advantage. The education on their resume is just one part of the story, pay attention to their personality and in how many different fields people have worked and have been capable of adapting themselves. Hobbies, books, and interests are also important when trying to find curious minds.

  • Collaboration vs defensiveness

This is an essential feature influencing not only team workers but also your own communication with an employee. If a person handles critique with defensiveness or rather blames a colleague for mistakes, they will not bring themselves and your goals far. People should commit to collaboration, see an advantage of teamwork and stick to it, as they should stick to your company.

On the other side, how can you convince these people to work for you?

Potential employees need to be assured of a possibility for professional growth. They need to see the opportunity and find a sense of real meaning. They need to feel deeply engaged with what they do and enjoy who they are doing it with.

You, as a leader, need to convince them that you not only appreciate their skills, experience, and talent, but that they will have the conditions to express their skills, experience, and talent.

Don’t only consider how your business will benefit from a hire and start thinking how the person you hire will benefit from becoming a part of your business. Even when posting a job ad, make sure to focus on what the applicant will gain from employment within the company. Don’t be afraid to change and repost your ad if the previous version did not generate a lot of response.

As Steve Jobs said:

“We don’t hire smart people so we can tell them what to do. We hire smart people so they can tell us what to do.”

Surround yourself with them.

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