Hire for the Person, not the Job

Published in Geek Health by

In another lifetime I was an online journalist, a blogger before being a blogger was called blogging and we’d just post in whatever Content Management piece we could cobble together.  On one convention trip I was fortunate enough to meet Richard Taylor, the Academy Award winning Supervisor of the WETA Workshop responsible for Lord of the Rings and others.

The New Image Freedom Team

During our conversations Richard shared with me how WETA puts together their teams.  He told me that they hire for the people first, and teach them the skills second.  Of course it helps to hire a creative in a creative space and an analytical in any kind of analytics space but the wrong person is always going to be the wrong person.

I don’t believe that there is a school out there that fully prepares anyone to work in the social media space or the search space.  So much of what we do is finesse, it’s the right person having the right kind of eye for this work.  The right customer service ethic, the right outgoing personality, etc.

Recently I’ve grown, as has the business, and you along with me as readers and as you know we recently hired two full time staff members, our new Projects and Operations Managers.  I had planned to stop there, but as growth continues I’m once again looking at adding a fourth and possibly a fifth person to the office to accommodate some of our recent contracts.

The challenge then is to find the right people, who not only have an eye for search and social media, but who are also the right fit for our culture and the right fit for me as the business owner.  Richard Taylor had the right idea, and while I was probably 17 when he shared that wisdom with me it is something that really stuck.

Find the right people, and the rest will follow.