Companies are different. Entrepreneurs are different. Products and services are different. But hiring the right players has core fundamentals. After 30 years of building companies and careers in emerging tech industries, the fundamentals of properly choosing teammates has declared itself in my Hiring Stack.
The Critical Baseline
Cognitive Intelligence is a multi-factorial category. The ability to learn, sustain attention over periods of time, working memory, strong pattern recognition, processing speed / clock speed, the ability to reason, solve problems and make sound judgements.
Points of evidence are declared in but not limited to cognitive testing, level of an individual’s education, and the universities attended.
Integrity is a critical baseline to establish, without it, most strengths can quickly become liabilities. A person with a high IQ and endurance without integrity is a bad situation waiting to happen. Exploration of the persons integrity includes being respectful, exhibiting maturity, personal responsibility, willingness to help, conscientiousness, and empathy. Integrity is the first thing tested when adversity shows up.
Business is a series of macro and micro cycles. Endurance should be explored. Physical, emotional, and empathetic endurance. A person’s ability to endure a long period of unpleasantness or difficulty is directly related to their success. The ability to endure long periods of physical, mental and emotional unpleasantness and not become fatigued is tied directly to good decision-making. Fatigue makes us weak and weak people are capable of terrible things.
Collaborative, the ability to cooperate, create alliances, and maintain cohesiveness in an organization are key traits in order to be a successful teammate. Being collaborative does not mean that one cannot or should not disagree. It means that one can work together on a team in order to pursue a common purpose.
You can most definitely be a collaborator and also be disagreeable, in fact it is critical for best outcomes. Having collaborative tendencies means that we are able to have a strong opinion on something but be able to stay present in the dynamics of discourse and allow the evidence-based argument to emerge and allow the best idea to win and not the need for your idea to win.
The logo is the company. The company mission needs to be clear and when a question arises either in a group or in an individual’s mind, the touchstone is the company mission.
The team is the pack that you run in. In small companies, the pack may be the entire organization, in larger companies it may not be. Alignment of intentions and goals of the team follows next. Your team is your foxhole, whoever is in your foxhole, you have “their back” before yours.
Finally, if the first 2 are used as guidelines and a person is in the right organization, the individual gets served.
The ability to abstract is an underestimated and often misunderstood quality. We learn through abstraction. Stories from the Bible, fairytales, and the classics written in fictional books. They teach us things that we can then translate into everyday living. We see patterns, we learn, and we translate to the workplace / relationship.
We can model from the abstract and then eventually put into our own voice and codify it relative to our business environment. Understanding analogues from other scenarios and apply them in a practical to our business scenarios translates to innovation and positive dislocation from legacy
Interview sessions should revolve around this stack. Everything else will fall into place.