This week we took part in the Selection Days of the Web&Mobile Program 2017 of Rockstart Accelerator. Each year Rockstart selects promising startups and provides them with a program of 100 days. The start-ups become part of a community, get access to a great network, to mentors and the opportunity to participate in lots of activities that help them grow and be successful. An important part of growing a start-up is growing as a team and as a professional. Therefore we work with Rockstart to coach and guide the teams on their development.
During the selection days, we meet up with the teams and try to get to know them a bit better. It is actually a speed date and we use personality questionnaires (profiles) to talk about team and cooperation. An interesting question that we often get is regarding the recruitment and selection of new team members. We can relate to this remembering when we started Elevate. We were so happy that someone wanted to work with us, that we really didn’t spend enough time to see if the new team member would be the best fit. Most start-ups are not able to pay a huge salary and are inexperienced in interviewing. So how do you know if someone is a good fit?
One important thing is to understand yourself and your team. The better you are able to reflect, the better you are able to explain how you work and what you feel is important. Managing expectations is key and it is important to be transparent. This helps the candidate to identify if he or she would fit your team. On the other hand it obviously is important to get to know the candidate. The more info you collect, the lower the risk of a “bad hire”. A “bad hire” is a waste of energy. For yourself as well as for the candidate (who might leave a good working environment behind). Yesterday evening I found an interesting article about how to move away from the traditional interview and use a different approach. Hopefully you’ll find it inspiring and that it helps you innovate your selection process.
PS. Obviously you should be careful not to step into the many forms of psychological bias. E.g, “aha, at lunch he ate everything on his plate, so he is very good at finishing things”.