This week, I am writing a quick blog series on how I hired my team for a client project this summer. I thought it would provide an interesting perspective to job seekers on what actually happens when a small business seeks to construct a team. Less than 3% of U.S. companies have over 500 employees so the small business mindset is important to many job searches. Again, this is my experience, not just my opinionated advice.
My intent is to keep this blog series as dead simple as possible. Today, I want to point out what the sources were for my hires, meaning where I first met my team or came to know of them. As you’ll see, I relied on my network to fill my positions because trust was important to me, and as an experienced recruiter, I subconsciously spend a lot of time cultivating a network of talented people for moments like this. It never occurred to me to post any of the jobs on sites because I knew if I looked in the right places, I had perfect people within two degrees of myself.
Over the course of the project, I worked with 11 other people, almost all part-time and all hired in June or July 2011. Nine were excellent and two of the eleven were replaced by other hires- one didn’t like freelancing and the other one was asked to leave, but I’ll count them in here. So where and when did I first meet these people?
– Two hires originated from Twitter chats (fall 2010 and spring 2011).
– Two hires were former co-workers (2005 and 2010). One I found when I posted on Facebook that I was hiring and a mutual former co-worker informed me the hire was considering freelancing. A second I found when I poured through my LinkedIn network and found out that she had made the move to independent consulting.
– One hire was recommended by a former direct report who saw my post about hiring on Facebook (summer 2011).
– One hire I first met at a live Brazen Careerist networking event (fall 2010).
– One hire was recommended through someone I worked on projects with and originally met on Brazen Careerist (spring 2011).
– One hire I had found on Google as a direct competitor (spring 2010) but developed a close relationship once we started talking on Brazen Careerist (spring 2011).
– One hire I met in a women’s entrepreneurship group that we both hated (summer 2010). I thought of her when I was looking at my LinkedIn network for good partners and talent. (Interestingly, the team member in the bullet above was also in that same group but we didn’t know her.)
– One hire was referred to me by my college mentor for an internship at my old company and came to work with me at The Opportunities Project as an intern and then operations and marketing consultant (summer 2010).
-One hire I met through a book club I once managed and have worked with over and over again on professional projects since we met (2004).
It shouldn’t have to be said, but I’ve spent my life working in recruitment and was not just going to hire anyone for the biggest project of my career (more on why I selected people on Thursday). Are you still surprised with how I staffed my team? My guess is that instinctually many of you would say no, but it’s likely not aligned with how you might be trying to find your own next opportunity. What do you think? Let me know in the comments.