One of my favourite questions to ask someone is “Who’s the best [CMO/CTO/VP of Sales] you know?”
I don’t care if they already have a job… I just want their name.
Actually, I prefer if they’re already working because it allows me to build a relationship with them without the pressure.
My approach once I have a name is to reach out with a big, real-world challenge that I can get their advice on…
… usually the first contact lasts 15 minutes.
I’m just looking to establish a connection.
From there, I follow up and keep the conversation going and work them through my process for hiring.
But what if you don’t know anyone to ask?
That’s why I share the concept of “deputizing” in this week’s video.
It’s a core part of my C-level hiring strategy, guaranteed to help you hire great talent.
The overall framework falls into 3 phases, but they’re built on the foundation called the Ikea Effect.
The concept is simple…
Someone who’s involved in building something, sees that creation as having more value than if they had just bought or been given that thing.
That’s why, I use the “Ask for advice” angle for reaching out and connecting with all my potential hires as a first step.
The reason that works best is I get to “test drive” the person before I ever invest a significant amount of time and money bringing them on.
What I’ve learned over the years is someone can seem like a perfect candidate, but a simple project can surface some glaring issues that would make it almost impossible to work with (ex: lacks creative problem solving, isn’t clear in their communications, doesn’t know how to lead a team, etc).
When it comes to hiring C-level talent, you need to find a way to simulate the work before you ever hire them so you get A-players only!
Using this process will help you build an incredible leadership team that will allow you to free up your time and scale your company more easily.
If you have questions about the test project, leave a comment with your specific hiring scenario and I’ll offer up some examples.
Now go out there and deputize some people to identify killer talent for your company!
Dan Martell has advised more startups than his hometown has people and teaches startup founders like you how to scale. (Get the free 3 videos to grow your business here.) He previously created, raised venture funding for and successfully exited two tech startups: Flowtown and Clarity.fm. You should follow him on twitter@danmartell for tweets that are actually awesome.
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