Aside

Customer Delight Produced by Delighted Employees

One thing that’s been keeping me up at night is ways to scale Rubicon. I know that ultimately we need to add staff as we have a high-class problem of serving our customers well and with the range of what they need done.
Fundamentally, I believe that great hiring is the key to customer delight. Finding an incredible employee is challenging. But my team and I really put some elbow grease into it. And in case it helps you, here’s the approach I took:
First, we wrote a compelling Rubicon_SrAssociate_062006.pdf job description. We spent time circulating this amongst the team, and getting the job description to be crisp. I had clients give me feedback so they could help ‘shape’ the role. That caused both great intelligence from another set of senior managers, but a general buy in.
2nd, I then wrote personal 1:1 emails to all the people I know in the industry who already have similar profiles. Effectively thinking that the person is already someone I know, or that someone who is similar to this job would know like-minded-skilled people. I asked them for help, knowing that asking for help is the #1 way to get people to commit to your resolution. I specifically focused on people who had recently been hiring since I knew they likely had another 10 resumes of people they liked. This went out to about 40-50 people from my email and then another few from teammates.
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3rd, I wrote in my email that I was personally offering a $500 thank you / bounty for the person who does the referral that leads to the winning candidate. I wanted them to take 5 minutes and forward. I wrote the amount $500 twice in the email to get their attention. To make it seem less cheesy, I said it could buy some new shoes for women, and some new gadget for men. I heard that one of my candidates had it forward *through 4 people* to him. That gave me confidence that this worked. People sent it to groups, and essentially did the role of an HR group really well to get the word out.
4th, I only then posted the job on Linked In. For $95 bucks, you get to focus on folks already in technology since Linked In is centered on that.
5th, I put 5 questions at the back of the job description. I wanted candidates to show that they could think by answering some open ended questions. I figure I only wanted people who could write, create an argument, show their intelligence. So I used that as a screener for sheer intelligence and communication skills.
6th, I had instructions on how to submit the resume in the document itself. I wanted to see if they paid attention to detail. Then, I put a strict policy in place that anyone who submitted without following the instructions got tossed as a candidate. That took discipline on my part but I figured if they didn't listen to instruction now, they weren't going to listen to stuff later. This also helped weed out candidates who were just sending out their resume.
7th, I trolled. I then used my key words and spent about 4 hours trolling on Linked In and sought out candidates. I thought that did 2 things. One, it reminded people that I was looking (which raised candidates) but it got me really focused on the target skills. I found 2 unbelievable candidates from that process so I considered it well-spent time.
I think this is my biggest company decision in '06 which is why I spent so much time on it. And since I believe that the great brain trust on the Rubicon team, matched with our methodology, produces great results…it seems like finding the right employee is key.
Wish me luck.

0 Responses:

  1. Marsha. July 20, 2006 at 3:07 pm  |  

    With the right people, you can go out on a limb, take risks and win continuously. It’s a smart thing to honor the synergy that occurs between people. In doing so, we’re honoring each individual and the greater whole that our coming together creates.

    Reply

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