Recruiting Like Welch and Madden — a Platform for the Small Business

Dec 19, 2012

Visionary companies are full of intelligent, progressive, optimistic individuals all working toward a common goal of success. For any company, employees like these are not a luxury, rather they are a necessity; even in the largest of companies, a few rotten eggs can spoil a large group.

The smaller the company, the worse the problem as a single rotten eggs can not only spoil the group, but he or she can take down the business.

In recruiting, small businesses don’t have the luxury of failure. They must get recruiting done the right way the first time around. The smaller the organization, the fewer rotten eggs it can endure before the company collapses.

How to Get It Right the First Time Around

Jack Welch, former CEO of GE, made the statement that recruiting good people is difficult, but recruiting great people is nearly impossible. Jack Welch had an entire HR department, a seemingly end-less recruiting budget, and the household name of “GE” when it went to find employees … and the adjective “impossible” still applied.

Where does this leave the small business with a small salary budget, little training time, and a less competitive name? Smaller companies have had trouble recruiting since the dawn of business; however, your Googles and Facebooks don’t always have to win.

It’s all about how you market the company. Smaller companies should not be afraid to describe themselves as visionary, and should not deny the fact that they have not made it yet. To the right employee, this is not going to be a turnoff, rather it will prove to be an inviting challenge.

Large or small, the best companies are proud of who they are and find the good points to emulate about themselves. Authenticity is just as important in recruiting as it is in life.

If you can’t buy the victories; win with what you have. It’s leadership that molds an employee rather than an employee molding a company’s leadership. This is evident not only in business, but in sports as well.

In the 10 years that John Madden coached the Oakland Raiders, he never had a losing season. As a matter of fact, he won the Super Bowl, won seven Western division titles, and had a winning streak of 17 games between the 1976-1977 seasons. This was not because of who Madden recruited, but rather it was what he did with the athlete once they got on the team.

The passionate always recruit the best, and when a small business is passionate about its product or service, its deep-seated attachment to that company comes through and resonates like no other to the job seeker, thus allowing the true entrepreneur to recruit x, when he or she can only afford y.

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