5 Hiring Tips for Your First Startup

A lot of entrepreneurs start their career somewhere in the office, closely observing their coworkers and studying their pattern behaviors. In theory, this is supposed to equip you with all the knowledge you need in order to differentiate a great employee from a slacker, yet, this technique is not nearly as effective as it’s supposed to be. In other words, you don’t really get that much actionable experience in this way, seeing as how an employee may have certain biases that prevent them from looking at things from the point of view of an entrepreneur. With this in mind and regardless of how knowledgeable you think you are on this topic, here are six hiring tips you have to learn before you start bringing in talent.

  1. Attracting the right crowd

The first mistake you have to deal away with is the belief that an ideal candidate is the one who doesn’t look for that many benefits. From a financial standpoint, this makes perfect sense, seeing as how they’re about to cost you less in the short-run, yet, this also indicates that they might not see employment in your company as a permanent solution. In other words, people who aren’t interested in health insurance, 401k plan, dental insurance and maternity/paternity leave, are probably going to stay with you until a better offer arrives. In fact, they will probably be looking for a more promising job offer all the time while they’re in your employ.

In order to avoid attracting this kind of employees, you need to do two or three right. First, you need to post a detailed job description, as well as the list of skills necessary for one to succeed in this line of work. Second, you need to create a clear career path from this entry point upward, which will attract most ambitious of your employees. Finally, you need to incentivize your employees with all kinds of perks and benefits. In this way, you stand a greatest shot at attracting the top-tier of your industry’s talent pool.

  1. An independent background check

When hiring, you have to understand that all of the applicants have it in their best interest to portray themselves in the best light possible. In other words, they will make their resume flawless, they will prepare for all your questions in advance and they will make sure that you only see their idealized versions. Therefore, you need to proceed with an independent background check. First of all, you want to look for online platforms helping you conduct police checks. Whether or not your potential employee has a criminal record should be of your primary concern. Next, you might also want to visit their social networks, in order to figure out some of the stances they wouldn’t be likely to share with you.

  1. People who make a great cultural fit

Your company is a subculture of its own, with its own set of values and principles it holds close to heart. Therefore, you need to find people who will be a great cultural fit. Think about it, once your company grows out of its proportions, your employees may find themselves under the spotlight as well. In this scenario, the last thing you need is an employee whose worldviews don’t concur with those of your brand, to make a slur on social networks that will reflect poorly on your entire organization. Moreover, you would be surprised just how many people are uncomfortable with working in a multicultural office, which is, nowadays, the business world standard.

  1. Think about the introverts

Most job applications come down to the interview, which, extroverts excel at, while introverts tend to feel shy, uncomfortable and usually don’t make that much of an impression. The problem here is that you need those introverts just as much as you need the extroverts. In fact, some surveys are even claiming that, due to the fact that they aren’t as distracted by immediate rewards, introverts tend to be better strategic thinkers and, therefore, better employees. Whether this is true or not, it’s not something you can afford to miss out on. In other words, don’t get too distracted by ‘charisma’ during interviews and try your best to get the answers you need even from the shyest of applicants.

  1. Don’t hire friends

Finally, the greatest problem with finding the manpower for your startup lies in the fact that you probably won’t have that many open slots, to begin with. Therefore, you might feel inclined to hire a couple of your unemployed friends and, in this way, solve your problem once and for all. After all, this would allow you to skip the background check stage (you probably know everything already), as well as to skip the interview. The problem, however, lies in the fact that you’re putting your friendships at risk, as well as letting your personal feelings get in the way of your rational decision-making. Overall, if in any way possible, it’s for the best to avoid bringing in friends and family.


Being proficient when it comes to hiring is a skill that you’ll need as an employer or a manager, regardless of the scope, size or the industry your company is in. Even in the best of companies, employees quit (due to a better offer, maternity/paternity leave or relocation) and need to be replaced (if only temporarily). Still, the sooner you start implementing these positive trends into a system, the sooner you get to reap the benefits of being able to rely on the full potential of your workforce.