Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about hiring and how the best companies out there were built. A good chunk of what makes a company great (as opposed to anywhere on the spectrum of mediocre to good) are the people who work there. The highest performing companies regularly have the best people working for them.
Now — that doesn’t come as a surprise. It intuitively makes sense that the best people want to work for the best companies; thus, once a company becomes great, they turn into honeypots for amazing talent.
But the more important question is: How did they start out? And this is where it gets interesting — as regularly startups, which eventually became great, focussed relentlessly on finding the best talent from the get-go. The founders of these companies won’t accepting hiring anyone who isn’t top of their field, brings the right energy to the table, has a strong growth-mindset and fits into the culture.
Hiring this way is hard. It requires heaps of energy, takes up lots of time and more often than not, you will say no to candidates for positions which desperately need to be filled.
But once you compromise, once you let a B-player onto your team, things typically go south. B-players hire C-players; and A-players don’t want to be on teams with B/C/D/E/F-players.
Companies are built by teams. Great companies are built by outstanding teams. As an entrepreneur it is your responsibility to hire only the very best talent you can find.