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Finding and hiring top talent for your team


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Hiring can be daunting, but when done right, it can be the best thing you do for your growing business.

As Compass’ director of recruiting, I’m responsible for helping our executives find and hire the highest caliber of talent they can for their growing teams. I provide that same counsel to our agent team leaders.

The faster your business grows, the higher the hiring stakes. Setting standards and hiring candidates that exceed them is the best thing you can do as your business scales.

With that in mind, I’d like to share five steps that I’ve found support finding and evaluating great talent.

Scope the role

Before starting your candidate search, answer these questions:

What’s the goal of this hire? Whether it’s help with comps or better marketing, make the goal of the role clear. What gaps should this role fill? If you have a small team, it’s crucial to hire someone who maximizes your strengths and offsets your weaknesses. What does success look like? At Compass, we use 30-, 60-, and 90-day goals to clarify what success looks like. What traits do you value most? For example, if autonomy is important, make sure your hire has experience working independently.

Write the right description

A job description is a first impression and it starts with the title. Thinking of the coolest possible title, like “Listing Jedi” or “Operations Czar” is tempting, but, as exciting as those titles can be, accuracy is key.

Your description should be performance-based. Don’t just catalogue skills, degrees and background. Put yourself in the candidate’s shoes. What would you want to know if you were applying to this job?

I coach agents to develop clear guidelines about what the person in the role they’re hiring for will be responsible for accomplishing in the first 30, 60, and 90 days.

Attract talent

Job boards, social networks or sourcing on platforms like LinkedIn are great ways to find talent, but the best place to find standout candidates is your own network. Studies show that referral candidates start sooner, perform better, stay longer and are more likely to be the right person for the job.

At the same time, listen to the market. If you meet someone who would be a great fit for the role, take the opportunity to pitch it. As agents, you know how to sell. Sell the growth opportunity and the upside. It might get them interested in a conversation.

Interview for traits

Whatever traits you decided on when you scoped the role should guide the questions you ask in the interview.

For example, at Compass we value collaboration, so we ask candidates to tell us about times where they obtained consensus from a team, met resistance or disagreement within a team and built trust that inspired teamwork.

Adjust your interview questions for the traits most important to you.

Onboard for success

Congratulations! You’ve evaluated multiple talented candidates, and found a great addition to your team. But it’s not over yet! Onboarding is as important as the interview process.

First and foremost, welcome your new teammate! Week one sets the tone. Introduce them to other agents you look up to or have close relationships with. Creating community on the job will help retain them.

On day one, take your new hire through those 30-,60- and 90-day goals you scoped, and use them as a way to collaborate. Then, let them get to it and check back in on those goals along the way.

If all goes well, you’ll see your team and business grow.

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