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Finding company fit for your startup team

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by Startacus Admin

Finding the right company fit for your startup team...

Last month we finished our 'Recruiting for your Startup’ series with a post on the options you have once you’restartup recruiting at interview stage.

One of the previous posts featured key pointers you’d want to consider when creating a job description, including identifying the main criteria that you’d deem to be necessary for your job vacancy.

Apart from the main criteria, you’ll often hear recruiters and HR folk talking about the importance of the 'company fit' when finding a new employee.

But how do you measure company fit? And how do you make sure that your new recruit adheres to this?

It’s pretty important to get this right - especially since as a startup, you may have fairly limited resources on the HR side of things. With this in mind, here are a few of the basics you should consider:

Company fit does not equal discrimination

Let’s get this clear - matching the right person to your job requirement, also means having and keeping an open mind. It certainly doesn't mean discriminating or shortlisting out a certain type of person. The best types of companies are the ones that fit all the best people into their company - now that is a company fit! Go into this process with pre-conceived ideas on the type of person and personality that you are likely to recruit and you are likely to be fail. If you aren't familiar with the what the legalities of employment law and what constitutes employment discrimination, then, no matter where you live in the world - get on the case with this now.

Do their values match yours?

If you are looking for a new recruit for the long term and someone gives the impression that they are in it for therecruiting for a startup short term, you have to really consider if this person is the best company fit for you, regardless of their CV, skills, experience etc.

Salaries in many startups are also typically often lower than the average salary you could find being employed by an established business. Therefore you’ll need to work out what motivation and incentives you can offer the chosen applicant to work for your startup and also that potential candidates can demonstrate passion, drive and interest too.

Matching gaps and key skills

As a startup you most probably have only a handful of staff. There is a strong chance therefore that you will all be pretty adept at multitasking. As well as finding someone who is flexible and willing enough to do this, you’ll also need to identify what key skills and talents are lacking in your current team and in turn recruit a new team member based on what your company needs most.

Within such a close knit team, it can be really useful to have a person on board who is proficient in passing on skills and knowlege to other members of staff.  There are special 'train the trainer' courses available which ensure that someone in your startup is professionally trained in how to do this effectively.

Working culture

If you love to go out and party as a team 3 nights a week and you are considering recruiting someone who openly admits to being a total home bird, you’ll need to work out if this is fine with your team or whether it may result in alienation. Of course for many of us that should not matter, but to others it might. You might also need to consider how said new recruit might fit in with the rest of the team - could there be personality clashes, or a lack of chemistry that could affect the current team and its work balance?

Letting your staff shape the company fit

Best possible solution to this ol’ ‘company fit’ melarkey is just to realise that your staff are responsible for shaping the overall company fit. The moment you start to try and shape the characters that work for your company is the moment that you could potentially miss out on a new hire who despite being very different from your existing team, could end up adding that extra little spark that could help make your startup fly.

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Published on: 17th December 2013

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