How to Recruit the A Team
20 December 2018

Recruitment – A team – competencies

When I was researching and writing Build Your Dream Team, a book which helps readers take a more creative approach to recruitment, I read 'Who' by Geoff Smart and Randy Street. It’s an excellent read and sets out their method for choosing A listers.

Everybody wants and needs A listers in the team. If you want to grow a business successfully it’s vital in leadership. As we look at the current dismal performance of the leaders of the UK’s political parties, we especially long for excellence and A lister leadership.

Unfortunately, it’s much easier to hire a C lister - or worse – so how can we work out who’s who in recruitment and raise our game?

The starting point is to closely and clearly define what we’re looking for. Based on feedback from 200 of the most successful business people in the world, here’s the ‘Who’ list of critical competencies for A players:

  • Organisation and planning - prioritises and plans in a productive manner.
  • Intelligence - demonstrates ability to quickly and proficiently understand and absorb new information.
  • Efficiency - produces significant output with minimal efforts.
  • Follow through on commitments - follows through on verbal and written commitments, regardless of personal cost.
  • Persistence - demonstrates tenacity and willingness even in difficult circumstances.
  • Honesty and integrity - earns trust and maintains confidence.
  • Aggressiveness - moves quickly and takes forceful stand without being overly abrasive.
  • Analytical skills - able to structure and process qualitative and quantitative data and draw insightful conclusions.
  • Attention to detail
  • Proactive - innovative and creative.

Street and Smart put forward other factors they consider makes up an A players as follows:

  • Ability to hire other A players
  • Ability to develop people
  • Flexibility and adaptability
  • Calm under pressure
  • Strategic thinking / visionary
  • Creativity and innovation
  • Enthusiasm
  • Work ethic
  • High standards
  • Listening skills
  • Coachability
  • Communication
  • Teamwork
  • Persuasion

This is a helpful analysis, although every business will have its own unique qualifications for A players.

Having the right people in the right role is critical to a successful business. If you don’t get these fundamentals right you are wasting your time.

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Although every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information contained in this blog, nothing herein should be construed as giving advice and no responsibility will be taken for inaccuracies or errors.

Copyright © 2018 all rights reserved. You may copy or distribute this blog as long as this copyright notice and full information about contacting the author are attached. The author is Kate Russell of Russell HR Consulting Ltd.