After being in a business for over 30 years, I look at finding the right talent as a bit of a 3-D puzzle. When we talk about any kind of candidate, we are talking about a person with certain skills, interests and passions. Their talent might fit into certain organizations but not others.
But the story doesn’t just start and end with your talent alone.
There are a number of people that you’ve worked with historically, creating an ecosystem of sorts. It’s a relationship ecosystem that you’re able to carry around with you. For example, you worked for a certain type of boss. You know that that boss has a certain management style, personality and likes working best with people of a particular type.
When you think about your entire ecosystem’s people, styles, backgrounds and more, it can shape some very important decisions about your next career move - including how to tell if a company’s ecosystem is in sync with yours.
Have you ever wondered how Google always seems to be able to attract the right people? They’re ultra selective, they get great people to come work for them and they hold onto those people for a very long time.
Now we’re able to peer behind the curtain to learn more on how Google goes about recruiting, motivating, evaluating, selecting, managing and promoting their people through a book called “Work Rules!: Insight from Inside Google That Will Transform How You Live and Lead,” by Laszlo Bock. It’s an eye-opener for anyone who’s ever worked in a Fortune 500 company as there is much to be learned from the way Google does things.
What’s the real secret to Google’s success in luring the right talent? Just be prepared to see an approach to hiring that’s far but traditional.
“A Curious Mind: The Secret to a Bigger Life” by Brian Grazer (the Academy Award-winning producer), talks about how curiosity is a concept that’s been underpinning most of the things in his life. Because he is constantly curious about people, things and stories, he’s made it a point of meeting with a variety of people.
In fact, when Grazer started in the movie business, he wanted to meet with one new person a day. Later on, he modified this to be one new person per month – outside of the film industry. He’d meet with fascinating people such as two CIA Directors, which probably influenced his production of the movie “J. Edgar.” He met with Jonas Salk, Steve Jobs, Condoleezza Rice, Oprah Winfrey, two CIA Directors and more.
What does this have to do with career development? Quite a lot, actually.