From Felix Dennis’ book, How to Get Rich:
One of the World’s Greatest Entrepreneurs Shares His Secrets
10 Points to Consider When Hiring or Engaging “Human Capital”
- Get others to weigh in on the selection of employees and key suppliers.
- This way you get additional feedback and hence, don’t allow any inherent biases to interfere with selecting the right people.
- Do more than just check references. Go visit the former employer or speak with other customers.
- This, of course, assumes that the references are not former bosses or customers.
- Listen well and take notes.
- Compensate employees well and provide bonuses.
- If an employee doesn’t fit well in a particular position, see if s/he fits well in another position.
- Sometimes the mistake is not in hiring the person, but the position he or she was fired for. For example, someone may be less detailed oriented than a project manager job requires but is a bit gregarious and great with customers. You’d switch that person to a business development or other customer-interfacing role.
- Hire high performance people.
- Hire people who are internally self-motivated and show a lot of initiative.
- Don’t let your biases get in the way. (See above.)
- Promote from within.
- This shows that you value your people and helps elevate and maintain high morale. Promoting from within also requires that you mentor and train employees in order to develop them for the next higher position.
- Move your senior employees around. Every 1-2 years.
- This is key! Highly motivated people with tons of initiative bore easily. Once they learn how to do a particular function or serve a specific role well, they are typically not interested in getting incrementally better. They want to move on to the next challenge. (I can speak to this personally. If I’d had this throughout my career, perhaps I never would have become an entrepreneur. Not! But it would have increased the length of my stay at the company.)