Attract your dream team

How to make your company irresistible to outstanding talent…

I have segmented this blog post into two sections – starting with the high level, straight to the point home hitters, followed by the detailed, max the juice, extended version for those of you who want to get as much out of this topic as possible.

Let’s get emotional – people work for you for their reasons, not yours. If you align your reasons with theirs, magic happens.

Everything we do is to seek pleasure, or avoid pain. Do your homework, find out what ideal team members desire in their lives, short term and long term, and what displeasure they wish to avoid.

Get to know your team’s emotional drivers.

Create, refine and perfect a dynamic recruitment system.

Hire slow, fire fast.

The right team will build your business – remember, business is a team sport!

The more control you have, the slower your business will grow, the less control you have, the faster your business will grow.

OK – if that’s not quite enough for you, read on for a more in-depth look at creating your winning team…

The challenge for any growing business is to attract and engage the right team to take their business where they want to go. As we talked about in our previous blog, the starting point must always be the creation of a strategic plan, setting of measurable goals and milestones, the scoping of divisions, combined with a skills gap analysis, and last but definitely not least, the identification and articulation of the business’s core values.

Having outlined plan for particular areas of growth, you may well find a proposition emerging that will require a whole new skills base.

An organisational structure needs to be created, with all roles clearly defined and fully described. This will allow you to approach the process systematically, starting with the pivotal roles to the company’s next phase of growth, then matching appropriate talent, personal values and skills to each of the newly defined roles.

In this part of the blog, we’re going to look a little more closely into what it takes to attract the right people – and ‘speak to their hearts’. If that sounds a bit ‘soft’ for your tastes, stick with us and let us explain further…

Here’s a typical job advertising scenario you can probably identify with this.

  1. The management team carefully create a detailed a job description, and reporting line.
  2. They write an ad that contains an overview of said job description and position within the company.
  3. The ad is launched, and the team wait for the applications to flood in with much excitement and anticipation.
  4. Hmmm, so the response has been a little underwhelming, but the team stride ahead undeterred, and send the full job description to the candidates that expressed an interest.
  5. A shortlist is made, and interviews conducted, at which time, the job description is discussed in detail, along with terms, conditions, pay rates, holidays etc. etc.

Disappointingly, despite the team’s efforts, the exercise has netted them just a couple of viable candidates – neither of which really fulfil the criteria of their vision for the role.

Where does it go wrong?

It’s all a matter of perspective – the team don’t necessarily do anything ‘wrong’ – they simply approach the task as most people do. They see the role as a job they need to fill, a set of skills and professional accomplishments to which they need to match a candidate.

This, of course is a requirement, but laying out a job description and a list of tasks is not going to connect with a living, breathing person, full of their own ambitions, hopes and professional dreams. It won’t reach their heart, capture their imagination or fire their passion. And the candidates you’re missing the mark with are the very people you want in your business.

So what’s the right way?

First, remember that although important, a job description is little more than a tick list, which will never stimulate the calibre of professional you hope to entice. It’s essential to understand what might drive the profile of candidate you are looking to recruit. Perhaps you need a true visionary, an inspirational leader, an innovative thinker, pioneering and passionate. So where do you find these people?

You don’t! You attract them.

You need to create an advertisement that is so compelling, they simply can’t ignore it. No job description, no list of tasks – these are pretty smart people, who can work such things out for themselves!

What to do instead, is create a vision of the future they can identify with. Paint a picture of your dynamic, young, home-grown, Australian company, taking on the world and changing the future of your industry (for example). Allow them to picture themselves in the role, spearheading their division, building an elite team, driving the business forward, feeling the thrill of their achievements.

To help you do this, as mentioned in our opening, you need to take a deep dive into the soul of your company to identify its passion and reveal its stories. Only then can you write a story of your own, to attract like-minded souls into the fold.

It’s also smart to conduct some research into the profile of the demographic / psychographic group you are targeting. Take the time to understand how to communicate with these immensely passionate people and create a vision that they want to be a part of. 

When Steve Jobs convinced John Sculley to leave Pepsi with the famous line: “Do you want to sell sugar water for the rest of your life or come with me and change the world?” I can’t help but wonder if he’d have been as quite successful in his recruitment endeavours if he’d simply handed Sculley a job description.

Jobs knew who he wanted, understood what made him tick and enticed him with a dream that ignited his passion.

The world is ever changing and the world of recruitment is changing with it. We are all much more in touch with our emotions than ever before – we respond daily to the stories of advertisers, retailers, brands, industry and technology leaders, etc. etc.

Why should recruitment be any different?

As business leaders, we are no longer recruiters – we are storytellers, in the business of attraction. Connecting people with an idea, identifying with their purpose and compelling them to reach out to the employers that share their values and beliefs.

This approach, admittedly, requires a great deal more work up-front. Crafting the right story takes a lot of research, but it’s well worth the effort. Learning about your ideal candidate takes just as much work, but is the most important thing – you need to learn who they really are and what they care about.

Getting to know people in your industry, and spending time with them, and even on industry forums can be a good source of intelligence. It’s important to really listen to people talk freely about what they love, hate, want and feel. Knowing what your ideal candidates are looking for from their current or next roles makes it much easier to plan how you can attract them and motivate them to apply. Take particular notice of the actual language people are using, so you can hit exactly the right tone with your communication and form an immediate connection.

What’s Interesting, is that with a killer recruitment strategy such as this, businesses frequently find that many of the candidates they attract, had not actually been looking for a new job – the communication simply struck a chord with them.

So, next time you have a role to fill, take the time to really think about the kind of person you’re looking for. Invest time to understand what drives them and therefore what will attract them to you.

Your next great leader may not even be thinking about a career move, so how can you compel them to apply, when a new challenge is currently not on their radar?

If you’d like a guidance chart of how to create a superb add, email me with the subject  – FREE AD CHART and I will send it to you.