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Hiring to build a winning team

Season 1: Finding and keeping great people

Khalilah Olokunola Chief People Officer at TRU Colors

Hiring to build a winning team

If your business is growing, chances are you need to find some people to help. A robust recruitment strategy with intelligent tactics will make all the difference to your ability to find, attract and select the best people.

It’s a vital investment in your business and people. The work you do here says so much about you, so it’s worth taking the time to get it right.

Stand out, and you attract outstanding people

Below are some key recruitment principles. Every company is different, and you’ll need to tailor your tools to make them work for you. But if you implement these ideas, I guarantee your business will attract the best and brightest stars.

The shout out

The shout out is where you recruit. It’s the platforms and places you select to put yourself out there and connect with the right people. Every platform has its own personality and user profile. The data exists, so do your research. Picking the channels and platforms that are most aligned to your needs will help you focus on finding the right quality of candidate, whether that’s LinkedIn, CareerBuilder, Monster.com and so on. Then be clear in your posts about what you’ve got to offer and what it is you’re looking for.

The send out

This is the most important component in the process. It’s what you do once an applicant applies for the job you’re posting. It sets the stage around your working culture, and the standards and practices people can expect. So, your response time is important. I recommend applying the 2-2-2 method to your pipeline. It’s a great framework for showing respect and keeping people in the picture:

  • Reply to every applicant within 2 days of the deadline with a simple email, thanking them and explaining that someone will follow-up.
  • Within 2 weeks, you should have set up any appointments, or told people that they didn’t make the cut.
  • Within 2 months, if you haven’t yet spoken to a person, you need to follow-up again to explain you’d like to keep their resume on file, but that you went with someone else who’s a better fit.

The stand out

This is your chance to stand out from the competition. The person applying for the position is interested in your mission, vision, values and culture, and what you’ve got to offer. So, send a document to them outlining your company story and all the things it stands for. Leave the future blank and ask them to help you fill it. This simple act shows you care about your work, people, and culture. You could even send videos showcasing your team and talents. It helps to create a sense of unity and invites people to get to know you better. Whatever you decide, use this time to show that your company presents a unique and outstanding opportunity.

The spark

It’s time to meet the candidates. You already know what’s in the briefcase; this is your chance to discover what’s in the head-case and the heart-case. First, make sure they’re comfortable. You want them to know they’re coming to a place that has a community of inclusivity and belonging. Once they’re settled, start a conversation. It’s a gateway to so much valuable information and it sets a tone of mutual respect and understanding. Use this time to dig deeper. What are their motivations, beliefs, and passions? Explore what it is that you can create and shape together. That way you’ll know not only if their skillset can help take your business forward, but if culturally they’re a great fit too.

In conclusion . . .

I truly believe businesses can be people-focused, purpose-driven and profit aligned. Hiring the right people is at the centre of those values. It takes time and resources to get recruitment right. And when you get it wrong, well, let’s just say that impact is felt. Remember, teamwork makes the dream work.

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