You’ve probably heard that the first ten hires are the most important in any company. What you might not know is why this is true and how to apply it to your own organization. This article will help shed light on both questions by first explaining how building a great team quickly can be an effective way to scale, then going into detail about what characteristics you should look for in each position.
The First Ten Hires
You will never be able to hire a fresh grad and teach them everything they need to know about your field in a single year. You can only hope that the employee has the passion and drive to learn for themselves, and that this is enough for them to succeed at their job. The reality is that companies tend to hire people who have no prior experience but are smart, motivated, and willing to learn on the job. However, even if an employee has all these qualities there’s still no guarantee they will excel in their position or stay with your company long-term.
The first ten employees you bring onboard are going to dictate how well things go for you in terms of culture, productivity, and output as well as company growth over time so it’s important not just because it sets precedent but also because it can make or break future investments such as expanding into new markets or building out new products/services.
Hire slowly, fire fast
This is a mantra that has been repeated for years in the startup community. The idea is simple: hire slowly and carefully so you can be sure that each new employee will add value to your company. Once they’re on board, it’s best to give them a long period of time before deciding whether they are doing well enough at their job to keep them around. But if they aren’t meeting expectations after some time has passed, don’t wait any longer—fire them quickly!
What should you look for?
The most important thing to look for in a new hire is passion. Does this person truly love the work they do? Are they excited about it, or are they just doing it because they have to? Can you tell?
What else should you look for? Look for curiosity. It’s important that your employees want to learn new things and grow their skills; otherwise, they will stagnate and become complacent at some point down the road. Look for people who take risks—an employee who isn’t willing to make mistakes or try something different may not be right for your organization. Finally, look for someone who is good at problem solving—this will come in handy when an issue arises that needs fixing quickly (and there will be many).
When hiring, also keep an eye out for good communicators: someone who can explain complex concepts clearly and concisely, listen closely when others speak (so as not miss any information), organize thoughts effectively before speaking to them aloud—these are all qualities that help make up strong communicators!
And finally, look for someone with integrity. This is important because it’s hard to trust an employee who doesn’t have their best interest at heart.
The Importance of Culture
Culture is the most important component. It’s what makes a company great, it’s what makes a team great, and it’s what makes a team successful. Culture is that intangible thing that people talk about in meetings but never really understand how to define or create. But when you have the right culture on your team, everything else falls into place.
Your first ten hires will be an art, not just a science. Coit is here to help you map out your needs to build your team within your timeline and talent budget. With over 20 years of building tech’s most beloved teams, we can help you grow a strong foundation.