Hiring 2.0

Ask the candidate their primary motivation early on. You need to understand this.

What are you offering to them?

  1. Career advancement
  2. Personal goals
  3. Vision
  4. Mission

Delay hiring as long as possible. Outsource instead, it teaches discipline and is considerably better for your burn rate.

Make one person responsible for the process.

Put processes in place.

[This article is part of the Innovation Snippets series]

Ask yourself

A lot of teams ask me how to get through an accelerator. I use the following as a North Star:

Does this decision take me closer to, or further away from, funding?

Entrepreneurs who cannot get this have not made the operative shift to founding.

[This article is part of the Innovation Snippets series]

Manage your energy

The book Designing Your Life has a wonderful model for energy management.

For any aspect of your work, monitor the following three components:

  1. Engagement – does it excite you when you are doing it?
  2. Energy – does it drain you or do you actually maintain your energy levels?
  3. Flow – does it lead to a feeling of ‘flow’.

You cannot continually do tasks which reduce your energy, especially if they are not engaging. But you should also rule out doing too many engaging tasks (activating tasks) if they leave you drained afterwards.

Flow is pretty much always a good thing.

[This article is part of the Innovation Snippets series]

The A* league

Remember when I talked about knowing your league? Well I lied when I started the list with an A-league.

In every endeavour this is also an superior A* league. It only exists for a tiny minority of superstars.

If this is your league:

  1. Learn to correctly identify other A* players.
  2. You will suffer in any of the other leagues.
  3. A* is international – never national.
  4. Stay in your lane.

[This article is part of the Innovation Snippets series]

Principles vs Product

An ideology or principles driven approach tends to lead to a failure to identify a market need.

A populist, ear to the ground, approach will find a better market, but may (i) fail to build a product, (ii) not deliver on real-world objectives.

There is always a tension. Know where you are on the spectrum and where your potential blindspots may lie.

[This article is part of the Innovation Snippets series]


My thoughts on hiring have evolved a lot.

I used to hire from the perspective of effectively mentoring the candidates into the role. This does not scale. And any payoff comes far too late.

What I have learned the hard way:

  1. Any compromises on hiring will come back to bite you.
  2. Hire for fit. To task and to team.
  3. Hire for ability to deliver on day 1.
  4. Hire for a growth mindset and ownership.

[This article is part of the Innovation Snippets series]