Recently, LinkedIn polled the influencers on its columns on their hiring strategies. The result is an awesome compilation of ideas and strategies on recruitment and hiring.


top-5The How I Hire series brings forth valuable lessons, inspiration and ideas on recruitment – a wealth of knowledge that new start-ups and entrepreneurs can use as they advance on their hiring strategies. The resume and ATS do not rank high on any of these visionaries list. You have to make a connection with each and every hire. To have an edge for your company or product you must focus well on your best asset – your team, your employees.


Here are my top 5 favorite lessons from LinkedIn’s ‘How I Hire’ series:


Richard Branson | Founder at Virgin Group

“Personality is the key.”

“If you are satisfied with the personality, then look at experience and expertise. Find people with transferable skills. Don’t be afraid of hiring mavericks.”


If you have interviewed or have been in an interview, you would agree that the first impression matters. It’s an instant or unknown connect you feel toward a person, and it may not come in the first few minutes but as you get to know the person during this first interaction. I’ve felt that multiple times and something just tells me, yes I’d love to work with this person or team or company. Personality talks not in words, but to the perception of the observer.

Making a hiring decision only through a profile or a resume or a reference may not work in true sense. Nothing can replace the human connection, recruiters and hiring managers must always meet and network to find the right fit for a position. The more you resonate with the personality and passion of a candidate, better are the chances of making  a good hiring decision.


Jack Welch | Founder, Jack Welch Management Institute at Strayer University

“Hiring is a discipline which improves with time and practice”

High on Jack’s list for a potential hires are integrity and high IQ are the must haves and the should haves include – having energy, can energize others, have an edge to make decisions, and are good at executing what needs to be done. For him a great hire would top his passion for work and life with a generosity gene. Jack describes it as a “craving – to help other people improve, grow, thrive, and succeed’.


For some, hiring is a job, for others it is a project. What’s the difference? A job needs to be done, as an every day task. A project wants to see a successful completion. When recruiters fill in positions just to be on top of number of candidates they have targetd, it becomes a task that needs to be written off. When top recruiters spend hours to research a potential hire, try to find out what and how they do what they do, each hire is a jem that a company will value for long. You don’t find diamonds very easily but when you know how and where to find them, you get better at it with every find.


Josh Bersin | Principal and Founder, Bersin by Deloitte

“Always be on the hunt. I tend to think about recruiting people all the time.”

Josh’s analysis emphasizes the importance of networking and getting to know more people in your field of work or those who resonate well what you believe in. Josh says, “Whenever I meet someone great I think to myself “could that person be interested in joining us?”


Networking has become easier with the online tools and social media sharing. If recruiters are not using these tools and combining their online experience with face-to-face networking they are losing out on developing the talent pool that could be the most important competitive advantage over others.



Deepak Chopra | Founder, Chopra Foundation

What makes an organization or business successful are core values, qualities of character, vision, purpose, camaraderie, and joy. And these cannot be outtargetd.

The key to a successful business or organization is the creation of dynamic teams where a) there is a shared vision, b) people acknowledge and complement each other strengths (as in a sports team), c) everyone is emotionally bonded and cares for each other. Such teams, between 5-12 people take time to form, but guarantee success.”


Hiring mindfully is the key to a successful hiring strategy and to the success of a company. Everyone talks about the culture of a company, what does it really mean? To me, this is exactly what culture is about, having team members who complement each other, who share a similar vision, who are driven to a common cause, who bond well. No success is solitary, it is a team work. If it’s not, it’s not sustainable.

It’s important to tailor your hiring strategies to know whether the candidate appreciates and understands what you do. Hire for talent and passion, train for skills. Your people are your most valuable assets, hire mindfully!


J.T. O’Donnell | Founder & CEO of

“I stopped asking for resumes a long time ago.”

“In my very first interaction with a potential hire, I get valuable hiring information from their answers to my questions. I learn:

    1. How knowledgeable and connected they are to my company and industry.
    2. How well they can articulate their thoughts.
    3. If they can write effectively.
    4. Whether they are truly interested in the position.
    5. What kind of work ethic they have.
    6. How confident they are in their ability to get hired.”


The points above just say it all. There’s much more to a resume and in my opinion, a resume just isn’t the right way to recruit. You ‘tailor’ your resume to a particular job. You spin keywords that would be picked up by ATS system. And at most times you might add stuff that just makes your relevant appealing, truth is not a criteria. So glad to see recruiters active on LinkedIn, looking at what people do and how they do it. It’s about time we chucked the resume.


Of the awesome thoughts shared in this series there are many others I like but some which I winced at. How I Hire: To Be Great at Hiring, Be Unafraid of Firing was one of them. It just downplays what has been said above. If you are not putting in a lot of thought into your hiring strategies then firing would be easy up-top on your list. Hey, if I don’t think he/she is right for the job, I’ll fire, it’s easy. Bad for company morale. No easy strategy is good in the long run. Opinions, my own.


Which ones were your favorite in this series? Share your opinion in comments below.