Are you a startup founder? Great to know this. And we all must remember that startup is all about passion, enthusiasm and courage to push our limits. Ours, means all the team members of the startup, including founders and employees. If you yourself is not passionate about your idea and dream, you should not go ahead to read this post. But if you can pour your passion and perspire to make your dream come true, if you want to make people see the world through your own vision, then you should read ahead, because you alone will not be able to achieve something giant. And you need people, employees who can fuel your startup engine.
I had recruited many people for my startup and also for some other companies. I had taken hundreds of interviews for getting good people in startup. But you know, to find a diamond we have to dig the mine. And mines consists of coal and dust. Same way finding a good candidate is like finding a diamond who can enhance the beauty of your ornament ( called startup ).
I recruited so many employees, and I made many mistakes also. I hired rock-stars also, and also some idiots also(by mistake). But when I realised the performances of these people, I recalled their job interview. And that explained a lot about them. And yes, age does not guarantee the good / bad of an employee. Some senior people with years of experience were not suitable for us, and ironically some college dropouts / freshers did fantastic job.
Let us discuss the characteristics of those people, who should be said Good-Bye on first interaction only.
1. Their only motive to work is MONEY
Ask your prospective employee what is the reason he / she wants to join this company? If the answer is “monetary hike”, say GOOD BYE. Really, I mean it. Money is need of everyone, but it should not be the only motivation for a person to go to office. You should look out for the people who are crazy to work on your mission, and who can passionately contribute with their skills. Your prospective employee should have a long term goal for his / her own career, and working with you should be in alignment with his long term goal. And this deal should be non-negotiable.
For ex: If a person want to be a digital marketing Head in a company within next 5 years. This is the long term goal. That person has already spent his 2 years in learning and doing digital marketing for other companies. And now he is ready to join you, and pour passion into your mission. This is a perfect match.
2. Does not have a history of staying long with company
People who work just for money generally have history of switching companies here and there. This kind of people are neither expert at some skill nor loyal to a company.
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3. Infrastructure matters more than work for them
For few people work place should be a jazzy , lavish place. They feel proud of working in such places, no matter what they contribute to the company. Such people value perks more than performance. They also want to know what benefits and perks your company is providing apart from salary. Their mindset seems like they are coming for a royal dinner where they can ask for many things. And as a startup you should not accept such mindset in your company.
5. Fix hours job mind. Focus on hours rather than work
Startup is like a time bomb, you have to accomplish more in short time, in order to achieve more growth. And people with fix hour job mindset can paralyse the growth engine. Ditch them from beginning. I have seen many employees who see clock more than what they see as unfinished work. Their only duty is to finish the daily hours, no matter what is accomplished at the end of the day.
9. Fix task mindset, Not a contributor
Startup does not need manual labourers. It requires people who can take the responsibility and match the ends. Ex: If a person is working on social media for your company, but does not drive any engagement, it is useless. You need people who can serve the ultimate purpose of social media activities, and that is brand awareness and engagement.
7. Inability to work in team
Startup is like a boat, all the people who are on board try hard to sail. The boat can not stand still, and all the people should contribute to make the boat proceed in spite of water resistance. So employee should be a good fit in your team. And he should maintain the harmony among all. There is no space for irresponsible and inefficient people in the team.
8. Does not want to personally recommend your company
Marketing starts from within. Every engineer, marketer or administrators etc should himself / herself endorse the company or product. If an insider can not recommend the product, it is hard for outsider to believe this. Every employee has their own personal network, and he/she can influence those people. I would never prefer a person who is not willing to endorse / suggest our product. Some people feel inferior working for a small company, and do not want to share their working status in startup. Such people are not loyal, as they just take away salary from the company.
10. Unable to learn new things
Startup is like exploring unknown areas and horizon. It is also challenged with limitation of resources. In this case, startup founder should hire people who can perform multiple tasks. This way cost to company is reduced, and more performance can be achieved with limited team members. Employee who is ready to learn new things can add much value. ( obviously in his scope of work, we can not say a sales person to code a website, but same sales person can take the responsibility of customer support, if he is willing to do so )
11. Fear of failure
Most probably this kind of people will not join startup. These people do not try to do anything new or risky, they put safety first. They see failure as a negative badge. But startup experiments everyday, fails in some experiments and learn from each experiment.
12. Always Complaining
Some people complain about their problems at work place. Problems like small space, not enough perk, no good furniture, no comfort, no high end gadgets, not good market etc etc. Some go even one step ahead, they are dipped in their personal problem at home, and they bombard their colleagues at work with complaints. This ultimately leads to low motivation and discouragement for overall environment for company. Startup needs positive thinking environment
I hope this list would help you make better hiring in future. And also you would be able to find which of your team member’s hiring is your mistake.
Please share this post to help someone, and COMMENT your opinions and experiences, that would be great to know.