We are humans and we are emotional creatures.
What does the word smart mean? Are we talking about the person who has more than 25+ years of work experience and would surely make no mistakes in his field, or are we rather referring to an individual who has his own way of solving day-to-day problems and is eager to adapt quickly? To be completely frank, the answer is unknown. Why? Well, perhaps we are using this term too often, without genuinely considering the real meaning of it… In the world of startups, a vast majority of founders are looking for “smart” individuals but at the end of the day, who exactly do they end up hiring? Is it a talent, or are we referring to someone else?
Agility vs. Experience.
Let us picture a plain real-life situation. Two candidates; a 40-year-old man and a recent graduate with zero work experience walk into a gigantic building waiting for their job interview. Both are asked the same question. Could you give me the approximate size of this building we are at? Experienced 40-year-old shouts quickly, I know all the heights of the biggest buildings here in this city, so the answer is 126.5 meters. Simultaneously, the young professional walks down to the outside go across the street and count the number of floors that the building has. Ultimately on his way back, he quickly adds up the number of floors and the preliminary height of each floor. Consequently, the youngster brings back the rough estimate of 124 meters. So who will be hired? Are we still living at the times, where the experience outweighs prompt adaptability or is there actually a time for certain changes to be made?
There is no doubt that the recruitment department is hectic in the present day. So much of a young potential is left out and there is barely anyone who could give out the reason why is the young talent squandered. Evidently, for short-term hiring, an experienced professional will most likely turn out to be more beneficial as it will take less time to prepare one for his or her position. Yet, wouldn’t it be better to discover the young and ambitious student who will most likely stay longer than an experienced professional if of course, a vision match between a startup and the individual will prevail in the first place. But then again, there is another side of the coin. Mostly everyone wants to be recognized and awarded. So here we begin with humans as emotional beings…
Thus following, in the case of small-scale startups, the questions “why?” and “how?” prone to be provoking, yet essential at the same time. A vast majority of undergraduates decide to bypass the corporate world and rather choose to open up their own business. Indeed, the lack of experience in the field is notable, yet still, a significant number of approximately 300 million young adults every year are allocating their savings and jump straight into a self-created entrepreneurial venture. Surprisingly, roughly 7-9% of them succeed in establishing a profitable business afterwards. As for the rest, the reversibility rate reduces drastically, as the unsucceeded entrepreneurs are grasped by bigger corporations or other startups. Although it is debatable on who to hire, certainly, in the long run, an ambitious individual who was a former founder will actually bring more at the table than an experienced professional who has spent most of his/her life in the corporate world. Why? Well, the reason is obvious, an internal spark to create something new demonstrates one’s commitment and a set of personal values that pushes the individual to seek more in life. But how to find an ambitious individual?
The great search and development of an ambitious person.
Referring to previous paragraphs we have resolved that a person who is eager to learn and improve as professionals every day is a valuable asset to a startup. No fancy degrees will provide that type of hunger. But first, it is crucial to pinpoint that person and this task is obviously no the easiest to execute. As a matter of fact, after potentially successful findings and hiring the right fit a golden rule remains the same – it will always take time and effort to let him or her blossom.
Well, the search for that kind of person is a hard objective to overcome. How could possibly anyone tell what is inside a person’s mind considering there is an average of 30 minutes of interaction in the job interview? It is practically impossible. There are some characteristics of ambitious employees to look for in the workplace. It’s important to notice these go-getters as soon as possible because these problem-solvers are rare and in great demand in the job market. If the person is excited about challenging situations in a company and expresses his interest in a position at the job interview it is a good sign. If some training gives one more joy than the time at the office gaming room it means that we are getting closer to a nearly perfect match. In general, it would be wise to look for a person who is interested and excited about his position and not one, who is excited about glitters such as gym membership or gaming room.
If you hire a person without experience you probably understand that his skillset is not going to be the same as some senior professional, who is in this game for a long time. That means that you or your partners will need to share an experience with him. There is no other way to onboard that person to your company! It will require a lot of precious time of senior employees, but as a result of such sacrifice, a loyal and proactive member of your organization will be cultivated. So not to be over-demanding and impatient a previously written phrase should not be forgotten as we are truly humans – the emotional beings. So what does this mean? Well, it means we have not quite yet achieved the level of robots and therefore we should not be treated as machines. It is a well-known fact, that humans make mistakes and failure is in our nature. If we do not fail, it means we are not progressing. So be patient, understanding, help and let that person grow!
Overall, we have nothing against the professionals who have a lot of experience under their belt. Obviously they know what they are doing and understand their industry very well. However inexperienced, but a devoted person is still very valuable and can acquire new knowledge and skills rapidly.