Entrepreneur Andrew Chen has written a great post about building your initial team, after you receive your first round of funding. The advice is great for any small business ready to start hiring people. He suggests:

  • Hiring T-shaped people versus specialists
  • Try to get doers
  • More candidate flow solves a lot of problems
  • Interview for the actual work you’ll be doing, not skill set trivia
  • Raw intelligence is just one factor – don’t overestimate it

I thought all five suggestions were valid, but the one which stuck out the most for me was # 5 – Don’t overestimate raw intelligence.

Years ago, I had a choice between two candidates. Karen was clearly smarter than Julie. But there was something about Julie I liked.

Against my better judgment, I let others convince me to hire the smarter candidate, Karen. I soon discovered the problem.  Everything had always come easy to Karen, and she was lazy.

About six months later, I had a chance to offer the Julie a job. While it took her longer to catch on, she knew how to ask for help and work until the project was done. Given a choice, I would hire Julie again.

Some projects require raw intelligence; others require muscle and work ethic. Be sure you know what you need most.

Follow the  link to read the rest of Andrew’s article