How to build the right team for your startup

How to build the right team for your startup

No matter how strong an idea you have, the fate of your startup ultimately rests on the shoulders of your team. After all, it could take only one weak member to bring down your entire business. My last startup had this problem, and it caused the company to crumble in a matter of months. We wasted time, money, and an amazing idea.

So how can you be certain that you’ve assembled the right team? Here are five steps to use when building your startup dream team.

1. Identify Positions

The most important members of your team are the founders. Before hiring anyone else, you and your co-founder have to settle on how decisions will be made within the startup. For example, are you the technical expert and your co-founder the marketing whiz? That right there should determine the structure and foundation of your startup.

Once that has been agreed upon, you should identify the positions needed to complete your team. Jobs in SEO, sales & marketing, programming, account management, and project management are just a handful of examples of positions that need to be filled. When identifying these positions, make sure that you prioritize them and find people with talents that other team members don’t have. It wouldn’t make sense to hire five project managers and not a single programmer, would it?

Keep in mind, of course, how much money you have in the bank to pay for the positions you require.

2. Advisers, Contracts, Partners vs. Full Timers

When starting out, you may not have to hire full-time employees. For example, you could attend an industry event or find industry-leading blogs that help you locate talented advisers (such as market or domain expert, connector, industry celebrity, personal coach, and technical expert). You can do the same with other positions–make a design firm your partner, for example. Or hire skilled contractors.

You also may be able to hire people on a part-time basis who are excellent at what they do. It’s safer than taking the chance on a full-time employee who may not deliver.

I personally advise many different companies as well as run my own consulting firm where I help startups. I’ve found that having people as contractors at the beginning and then moving to full-time employees is the best way to leverage a full set of skills for your business.

3. Identify Candidates

There should be four considerations when searching for candidates:

If you can find people who meet the above criteria, you have a great chance of putting together a winning team.

4. The Hiring Process

So you’ve found some qualified candidates. Now it’s time for the hiring process, which begins with an interview. The Wall Street Journal has a nifty little guide you should use if you’ve never conducted an interview. Some of the instructions:

Following the interview, do some fact-checking and a background check on the potential employee. If everything goes smoothly, go ahead and hire the individual. Once that person has been considered, give him or her tests. Start with a smaller project and work up to larger tasks. During these tests, you can see how the prospective hire communicates with other team members and handles pressure, and whether he or she can actually get the job done.

Let’s say the candidate passed your tests with flying colors and has become a part of your team. Does that mean everything is all said and done? Not really. Once that employee has been hired, you want to do some post-hire assessment. This means having strategies in place for training, promotion, and career development. These will serve as incentives for your team members.

How to build the right team for your startup

How to build the right team for your startup

Early-stage startup is all about working late nights and getting sh*t done to take the business to the next level. So, doing this stuff with those you ‘had to hire’ would be a huge pain

Rather than picture this in your head, use a better approach to find very first employees.

Purrweb builds stable products and MVPs to let business enthusiasts validate ideas. To get started, go write us at [email protected] !

T-shaped employees = experienced in one specific area(what they enjoy the most), but willing to tackle other tasks (not belonging to what they can do best) as well. They are curious and ready to take on new challenges. They are able to walk the walk and extra mile to make things work.

Suppose your backend developer might do some feature work. Or your QA tester might be good at writing promotional texts. Or your designer might be responsible for doing market research.

How to build the right team for your startup

When you’re just starting from scratch, these ‘Jacks of many trades’ will always be way more powerful than ones who have depth in just one topic. Just because if you build a startup with the latter you’ll need n people — no difference what you’re gonna build. If you just start out with T-shaped guys, theory’ thing:) Sounds like a cliche but works

For instance, you might prepare coding questions for potential developers or ask sales reps to explain how they would sell software. Then you ask first ones to write real code or pretend you’re a buyer and ask your sales rep candidate to sell you this software.

Beware of employees that belong to ‘dreamers’ group. They might easily generate new ideas and claim to be experts at something or other. Although, when it comes to hardworking, they just ̶w̶a̶t̶c̶h̶ ̶c̶a̶t̶ ̶v̶i̶d̶e̶o̶s̶ ̶o̶n̶ ̶Y̶o̶u̶T̶u̶b̶e̶ stay in the land of fairytales and do nothing.

Whoever you’re looking for, start with people you know. There’s a chance you’ll find first few members within your own network. For a business guy, the best scenario will be like to ask a techie fellow to join.

If you don’t have a techie friend to start a project with, go outside and look for a creative engineer, who’d help you manage all tech-related tasks, such as tech architecture building and backlog prioritizing. To find one, you can try Linkedin, founder2be or CofoundersLab. Attending seminars and meetups, reading technical forums and blogs is also a good option for that.

If you didn’t find devs or designers in the neighborhood, ask offshore employees for help. Outsourcing in the USA will cost you much more than hiring in-house employees, you can find cheaper labor in Eastern Europe or Vietnam though. Wherever your teammates are, check out their hourly rates and take into account time and cultural differences to evaluate if the ones, whom you’re gonna hire, fit your requirements well.

Whether you’re looking for your first, 10th or 100th employee. Take decisions about next hires based on your product’s needs, team members’ skills, values, and budget.

Don’t be shy and hold down that👏🏼 button to let first-time entrepreneurs see this post. And share your own ‘What it’s like to make very first hires’ observations as well:)

Even startups that manage to raise millions in seed funding can crash and burn before they establish themselves as a viable, sustainable company. (Anybody remember GoCrossCampus?)

Lynn LeBlanc, a tech entrepreneur with two successful startups to her name, says that in the rush to take part in a tech environment that’s turning 20-somethings into millionaires practically overnight, would-be entrepreneurs often make a critical mistake: they focus solely on their product or business strategy without paying attention to the people on their teams.

“Before going for the gold, be sure your team has the skills to create success,” says LeBlanc, CEO and founder of HotLink, an award-winning tech startup that enables companies to simplify hybrid cloud and IT management.

After working for almost 30 years in management and product design roles at both Fortune 500 companies and Silicon Valley startups, LeBlanc has developed these five rules for cultivating the loyal, passionate, and high-functioning teams you need to get your startup off the ground.

1. Only hire people you know. When putting together her team for HotLink, LeBlanc only tapped people who had worked with each other before in some capacity. “The practical skill set was very well known, and this is particularly important in an early-stage startup [when] delivery is everything,” she says.

Bringing on new people can add important skills, but it takes time to build trust in each others’ abilities. “You want your functional areas covered by people you trust early on to build the right strategy and get your early product out and in an efficient way,” LeBlanc says. “The more you know in advance, the more predictable the success of what you’re trying to accomplish.”

2. Find partners with the resources to make a long-term commitment. While LeBlanc was able to raise $10 million in funding for Hotlink in just three months, she stresses that it takes a lot to get to the fundraising stage. “It can take a while to be in a position where you can raise outside capital or bring in outside customers,” she says. “If you’re not in the position to work for the better part of the year (as a side job) without being paid, it’s going to be harder” to manage the overhead costs.

She recommends partnering with people who have the resources to help cover costs, so you don’t have to bring in angel investors up front. “The upside is at the end,” she explains, “everyone makes a lot more money.”

3. Don’t hire college kids. Along that vein, LeBlanc cautions against hiring employees who haven’t accumulated several years of experience — and the resources that come with it — by working for established companies. “You want a core team that’s seasoned,” she says, “but you can supplement that with people with a few years of experience.”

4. Integrate people with sales and marketing experience as early as possible. The trend in Silicon Valley, LeBlanc observes, is to “get a group of technical types together, create a startup, and then once it gets farther along, that’s when you start bringing the other functional areas together.” This is extremely shortsighted, she says, because “you don’t have people on your core team who are accustomed to taking products to market and selling them and getting people to give you money.”

As a result, a lot of the early decisions about what to build “are based on assumptions that aren’t valid,” and entrepreneurs wind up losing all their funding on products that nobody wants to buy. LeBlanc suggests bringing in people with consumer-facing sensibilities during the development phase, which can save you a lot of time, stress, and fundraising down the line.

5. Staff your core group with people who are passionate about the company, not the financial outcome. While startup success stories like Instagram and Snapchat are enough to make an English major think about engineering, LeBlanc argues that companies or apps that are created for the sole purpose of being bought up by Google have a very narrow chance of succeeding. “Too much fixation on a short-term exit is very dangerous when you’re putting together a startup team,” she says. ” Startups have a lot of ups and downs. If everybody is just looking for the payday, they don’t have the right perspective going into a startup, which can take years to make a success.”

How to build the right team for your startup

Written by Ricardo Tellez

ROS Developers Podcast

05/04/2021

This episode is about understanding why you can’t build your startup alone, and some criteria to properly select your co-founders.

In this podcast series of episodes we are going to explain how to create a robotics startup step by step.

We are going to learn how to select your co-founders, your team, how to look for investors, how to test your ideas, how to get customers, how to reach your market, how to build your product… Starting from zero, how to build a successful robotics startup.

I’m Ricardo Tellez, CEO and co-founder of The Construct startup, a robotics startup at which we deliver the best learning experience to become a ROS Developer, that is, to learn how to program robots with ROS.

Our company is already 5 years long, we are a team of 10 people working around the world. We have more than 100.000 students, and tens of Universities around the world use our online academy to provide the teaching environment to their students.

We have bootstrapped our startup, but we also (unsuccessfully) tried getting investors. We have done a few pivots and finally ended at the point that we are right now.

With all this experience, I’m going to teach you how to build your own startup. And we are going to go through the process by creating ourselves another startup, so you can see in the path how to create your own. So you are going to witness the creation of such robotics startup.

How to build the right team for your startup

Most new entrepreneurs work alone in developing their idea or a solution to a problem, but ultimately realize that starting and growing a business requires more. Not many people have the bandwidth to simultaneously cover all the required bases in finance, marketing, manufacturing, and operations, as well as solution development. It takes a working team to build a business.

What many don’t realize is that building that team is as critical and as difficult as building the solution. If you have the wrong people on your team, or the team can’t work together, you have no chance of making an epic business, no matter how great your solution. Witness the many memorable failure examples, including Friendster, Pets.com, and Webvan.

I see plenty of guidance of developing ideas, but very little on how to build the right team. Thus I was particularly pleased to see the new book, “Do Big Things,” by Ross, Paccione, and Roberts, that highlights the team building process specifically, based on their years of experience facilitating leadership teams around the world.

The authors detail seven steps, which I adapt here to new businesses, for mobilizing the hearts of minds of your team, in order to make the epic impact that you envision:

  1. Define your desired business culture and find people who fit. The first step is to assemble people who are willing and able to work together as a team. Getting subject matter experts is necessary but not sufficient. Finding interns or family members to save money won’t work. You need team members who are aligned in their thinking and action.
  2. Make sure the team embodies a common definition of success. Find people who share your vision of success and have confidence in you and what you are setting out to do. Teams that do big things do not team casually or randomly. They are willing and able to leverage failure, without losing confidence, since every business has many unknowns
  3. Everyone must choose to contribute, activate, and connect. Each team member must be determined to bring their best to the role, bring out the best in others, and choose to partner across their areas of expertise to deliver on the shared objective of a successful new business. Make it clear how you will measure each person’s results.
  4. Assure each team member has barrier breaking authority. Because every new venture has limited resources, the team will have to deal with real barriers, perceived barriers, and symptomatic barriers. The toughest barriers are competing priorities caused by business leadership not being aligned on a common purpose, strategy, or plan.
  5. Foster solid relationships to keep focus on what matters. It’s impossible for a team to effectively focus its energy on executing a plan when team members are distracted by poor relationships with one another. If you want epic team results, equip team members to have epic relationships, and clearly communicate purpose and milestones expected.
  6. Energize the team around a shared purpose and reality. A team can only build a successful business when the members of that team have an open mind that is receptive to your vision of changing the world. Energy that is being used to protect yourself cannot simultaneously be used to build the connections necessary for the team to succeed.
  7. Convert your vision to milestones to mobilize hearts and minds. Empower the team to create action plans for delivering a new and innovative business. Every team member must be equipped to ask the types of questions that lead to positive results, not boilerplate questions that aren’t intended to solicit answers or forward movement.

Every new business team has a big job to do – against swirling priorities, rapid change, and seemingly impossible deadlines. Too many teams are formed as groups of people thrown together with outdated and naïve ways of working with others. With scarce resources, this means that the average team is destined to flatline and fail. Don’t let your new business be the casualty.

By Michael Kurland, an entrepreneur who mortgaged his life savings for his first company, Branded Group.

As entrepreneurs, risk-taking is in our DNA. It’s why we started our businesses, why we forge ahead through challenges and also why we are never satisfied with the status quo. Pushing yourself to think outside of the box so that you can stay ahead of the ever-changing business environment is the norm for any savvy business owner.

It’s been nearly four years since I started my company and we have grown by leaps and bounds due to the talent and dedication of my team. Their commitment to delivering excellence on a daily basis is the foundation for our continued growth. However, the team on day one looked very different than the team I lead today.

The Starting Lineup

In the early days of any new business, it is customary to hire a team of seasoned professionals in senior management positions to oversee a team of individual contributors. This organizational structure fits well as your business is in startup mode. Workloads are manageable and your leadership team is able to interact daily with their direct reports.

It is during this time that you can evaluate your team’s work style, their strengths and how they act in a crisis. However, it is also an ideal time to note the movers and shakers in your organization.

  • Who are the team members that go the extra mile?
  • Who just seem to “get it?”
  • Who is able to take the ball and run with it on a regular basis?

These are the people who are likely to advance quickly in the organization and as their leader; it’s your job to nurture this ambition and drive.

The Halftime Show

Once your business begins to experience regular and predictable growth, reevaluate your organization chart. Are teams getting too large for one person to manage? Are these teams too diverse in their functions and need to be separated into new departments? Are the movers and shakers ready to take on additional leadership roles?

In order to continue along a growth trajectory, your team has to be able to support that growth. Staying ahead of your growth curve when it comes to developing your team is critical to avoid the stress associated with unmanageable workloads.

Being proactive with human resource management enables you to evaluate people’s skills and career aspirations. Not everyone wants to move up the ladder, but many do and it is important that comprehensive educational programs are in place to support these moves. This is not just a business best practice but also serves to incentivize your team as they can see a clear career path for them in your company.

The Game-Winning Shot

As individual contributors move into a middle management role, there are several dynamics at play. I considered each of these as I created this first-ever management level in my business.

  • Can they manage a team of people who used to be their peers?
  • Will they be able to separate their work from their personal relationships and lead effectively?
  • Is the team ready to be led by the same person who was in the trenches with them for so long?

A new manager’s ability to lead a team can only be successful with proper training, coaching and open communications. As you build a middle management layer into your organizational structure, it will be critical to have all of these pieces in place so that everyone can see your commitment to making this transition as successful as possible.

Your business is ever-evolving. And as leaders, it’s important to keep your eye on your long-term goals. Preparing for continued growth should not be left for end-of-year reviews but examined whenever there is a major change. For example, prior to signing on a large client, take a look at the teams who are supporting them. Is the business set up for success so that customer service is not impacted? During performance reviews, are employees itching for more responsibility? Do new laws or regulations dictate revised business processes?

While it is exciting to watch a game-winning shot by your favorite team, leaving the planning of changes to your organizational structure to the last minute – or worse – leaving it to chance is a risk not worth taking. Leaders must lead by example. Showing your team that you’re proactive about your business growth will inspire them to reach for more.

Michael Kurland is an entrepreneur who mortgaged his life savings for his first company, launched Branded Group in 2014 with a sincere desire to #BeBetter.

Most new entrepreneurs work alone in developing their idea or a solution to a problem, but ultimately realize that starting and growing a business requires more. Not many people have the bandwidth to simultaneously cover all the required bases in finance, marketing, manufacturing, and operations, as well as solution development. It takes a working team to build a business.

What many don’t realize is that building that team is as critical and as difficult as building the solution. If you have the wrong people on your team, or the team can’t work together, you have no chance of making an epic business, no matter how great your solution. Witness the many memorable failure examples, including Friendster, Pets.com, and Webvan.

I see plenty of guidance of developing ideas, but very little on how to build the right team. Thus I was particularly pleased to see the new book, “Do Big Things,” by Ross, Paccione, and Roberts, that highlights the team building process specifically, based on their years of experience facilitating leadership teams around the world.

The authors detail seven steps, which I adapt here to new businesses, for mobilizing the hearts of minds of your team, in order to make the epic impact that you envision:

Define your desired business culture and find people who fit. The first step is to assemble people who are willing and able to work together as a team. Getting subject matter experts is necessary but not sufficient. Finding interns or family members to save money won’t work. You need team members who are aligned in their thinking and action.

Make sure the team embodies a common definition of success. Find people who share your vision of success and have confidence in you and what you are setting out to do. Teams that do big things do not team casually or randomly. They are willing and able to leverage failure, without losing confidence, since every business has many unknowns

Everyone must choose to contribute, activate, and connect. Each team member must be determined to bring their best to the role, bring out the best in others, and choose to partner across their areas of expertise to deliver on the shared objective of a successful new business. Make it clear how you will measure each person’s results.

Assure each team member has barrier breaking authority. Because every new venture has limited resources, the team will have to deal with real barriers, perceived barriers, and symptomatic barriers. The toughest barriers are competing priorities caused by business leadership not being aligned on a common purpose, strategy, or plan.

Foster solid relationships to keep focus on what matters. It’s impossible for a team to effectively focus its energy on executing a plan when team members are distracted by poor relationships with one another. If you want epic team results, equip team members to have epic relationships, and clearly communicate purpose and milestones expected.

Energize the team around a shared purpose and reality. A team can only build a successful business when the members of that team have an open mind that is receptive to your vision of changing the world. Energy that is being used to protect yourself cannot simultaneously be used to build the connections necessary for the team to succeed.

Convert your vision to milestones to mobilize hearts and minds. Empower the team to create action plans for delivering a new and innovative business. Every team member must be equipped to ask the types of questions that lead to positive results, not boilerplate questions that aren’t intended to solicit answers or forward movement.

Every new business team has a big job to do – against swirling priorities, rapid change, and seemingly impossible deadlines. Too many teams are formed as groups of people thrown together with outdated and naïve ways of working with others. With scarce resources, this means that the average team is destined to flatline and fail. Don’t let your new business be the casualty.

How to build the right team for your startup

How to build the right team for your startup

Hiring, especially in Silicon Valley, can be one of the toughest challenges of running a startup, as there’s so much competition — especially for engineers. When trying to run a lean startup, the prospect of spending 20% or more of a hire’s salary on recruiter fees is not exactly appealing. But recruiters aren’t your only option for hiring. There are lots of ways to hustle your hiring on the cheap — here are five tips.

Missed the premiere of Behind the Launch? Watch it here!

1. Have a Structured Recruitment Process

It’s good practice to come up with a structured recruitment process, which you can evolve over time and bypass only for exceptional candidates. Having every candidate go through the same process means that you will have a level playing field on which to evaluate them; we’ve often found that when we’ve skipped our interview process for a candidate, there are glaring issues down the line that we hadn’t picked up on. Here’s a good step-by-step outline.

Review the profile of candidates coming through and arrange a short call with the ones of interest.

Keep the initial call to 15 minutes and mainly focus on assessing cultural fit to figure out if you’d get on working with this person. This is also an opportunity to “sell” your startup to the candidate and get them excited about what you’re working on. If the candidate is a cultural fit, then reach out to arrange a follow-up call for him to speak to one of your engineers.

The follow-up call with an engineer will last roughly 15 to 30 minutes and center on getting a high level assessment of the candidate’s technical knowledge. During the call, they will agree on a time when the candidate would be free to spend roughly 30 minutes completing a technical interview question.

Using tools such as Boomerang for Gmail or RightInbox, you can schedule to send a technical engineering question exactly at the time agreed upon with the candidate. At that point, you’ll be able to assess how fast he can problem-solve and how complete an answer they send back. For consistency, send all candidates the same technical question. A good place to look for inspiration for these engineering questions is university courses. If the candidate does well in the engineering interview, then invite them to your office for an onsite interview.

When the candidate comes onsite, introduce him to the whole team, then have him work with different engineers through a series of engineering questions. Then give the candidate an opportunity to hang out with the rest of the team, perhaps over lunch. Review candidates based on this onsite interview.

2. Keep on Top of Your Hiring Pipeline

It’s no use having a structured interview process if you can’t keep track of what stage of the process each of your candidates is at. PipeDrive is a great way to manage various candidates and keep track of their recruitment process, but you could just as easily use Excel or Google Docs.

3. Utilize Different Tools To Get the Right Amount of Candidates

It’s important to balance quality with quantity when reviewing potential candidates. I would recommend setting the bar high at the CV review stage to avoid wasting time on calls with average people. LinkedIn stands out as a great tool to identify potential candidates, but there are a few other websites that are useful for identifying a larger number of top candidates, including:

4. Don’t Forget to “Sell” Your Startup

It’s easy to forget that an interview actually works both ways — the candidate is assessing your startup as a place to work. Show your passion for your startup, outline the challenges that you face (top candidates like to be challenged) and invest time in building a team dynamic. Company culture is important, both in the recruiting process and for employee happiness, so go on team hikes, go out drinking together and tell candidates about the sort of activities that you do as a team.

5. Don’t Stop at the Job Offer

How to build the right team for your startup

When you find someone that you want to hire, don’t expect him to join just because you made an offer. There’s so much competition for hires, and highly coveted people often have several options. It’s likely that candidates won’t make a decision of where to join based solely on the terms of the offer. It will likely come down to a few factors, such as how much he believes in your vision.

Therefore, your work shouldn’t stop at the job offer stage. You should continue to work to convince the candidate that your company is the one he should join. If you have investors, you should ask them to take calls with candidates, to explain why they invested in you. You can also consider starting the person as a contract-to-hire, where possible — you’d pay the person as a contractor at the beginning, until he’s ready to make a decision. Lastly, ask any mutual connections that you might have with the candidate to ‘backchannel’ them to hype up how great your company is.

What are your tips for hiring? Let us know in the comments below.

How to build the right team for your startupSixty percent of small business owners and managers say their biggest human resources challenge is finding skilled talent. Heavy competition for workers with specialized skills doubles the difficulty budget crunches impose on recruiters. Some companies with deep pockets are offering generous transition packages to lure workers away from competitors. But for businesses that can’t afford this, smarter strategies are required.

Set the Right Bait

Fishing provides an apt analogy for successful recruiting. Some bass fishermen have sought an advantage in tournaments by planting submerged brush piles marked by GPS coordinates to attract fish seeking cool water. While this may not be sporting in fishing, it illustrates the value of effective baiting, which is a useful principle to apply to recruitment.

Start by knowing what you’re looking for. A review of your organizational chart, functions and personnel can help you identify gaps between your current talent and missing skills. Consider both short-term openings and long-term needs, factoring in how company expansion, personnel changes or industry developments might affect your needs. For instance, Steve Jobs made sure to train people who could fill in for him at Apple.

As you identify areas that require personnel, consider your hiring options. Do you need a full-time staff member, part-time employee, ongoing vendor or project contractor? Each has its pros and cons. Full-time staff bring long-term experience and loyalty, but can increase expense. Part-time employees offer flexible pay and hours, but may get hired away, and can complicate your benefits and tax liabilities. Vendors and contractors can cut your costs, but also limit your supervisory authority. Choose your most applicable option. As a rule of thumb, assign full-time employees to your company’s core strengths, and use additional personnel to fill out peripheral duties, such as accounting, tax preparation and IT.

Once you’ve identified positions that need filling, create the right recruiting bait. Write up a profile of your ideal candidate, describing their skill set, experience level and work habits. Build this into a job description that offers value to prospective recruits in exchange for the skill you’re seeking. What can you offer talented employees to make them want to work for you instead of a competitor?

Fish Where the Fish Are

How to build the right team for your startup

Successful fishermen know the good fishing spots. A winning talent search focuses on leveraged recruitment venues.

The first place to look is within. Look for talent on your own team before hiring outside. Do you have underutilized employees with skills that could be put to use? Do you have training systems to develop your workers?

When recruiting outside your company, pursue a long-term strategy instead of waiting to hire until you’re desperate for help. Build your reputation in your industry so that talented job seekers come to you on a regular basis. Create multiple recruitment systems to attract an ongoing stream of inquiries and applications.

Using multiple tools to attract job hunters will increase your odds of finding skilled applicants. Ask your employees and vendors for referrals. Develop relationships with recruitment agencies to leverage their resources. Scout other employers’ talent pools using social media job sites such as LinkedIn and databases such as Jigsaw. Place want ads on online job application sites to connect with virtual job seekers. Send recruiters to establish your presence at schools, job fairs and industry networking events.

Keep the Good Ones

After you cast your fishing net and haul in your catch, you face the task of tossing out the bad fish and keeping the good ones. Here it pays to study and follow recruitment best practices.

Your screening process begins by evaluating an applicant’s initial contact with you. Create a checklist of questions and a scoring system to help you review candidates objectively. For instance, how well did the applicant follow directions in responding to your want ad? Does his resume meet your qualifications in terms of skill set, experience and work ethic? Did she demonstrate reliability and persistence in following up on your communications?

Apply similar criteria to your interviewing process. Script a standard procedure for contacting qualified candidates, conducting interviews, and following up. Design a list of standard questions, and supplement these with customized inquiries appropriate to specific candidates. Include opportunities to allow applicants to ask their own questions and demonstrate their interest and initiative.

Follow up with a post-interview evaluation process. Use a checklist of objective criteria to help guide your decision-making, while leaving room for your intuitive impressions.

Once you find qualified candidates, make your hiring process easier by standardizing your onboarding procedure. Create policies and forms for streamlining tasks such as background checks, tax arrangements, payroll set-up and training new employees. You can semi-automate these processes by using software to assist with areas such as induction and project management profile creation.

What tips do you have for building the right business team? Share them in the comments.

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