I used to believe that there were two critical startup skills:
- Building a great product that has clear product/market fit.
- Building a sales and marketing machine.
At Matrix Partners, we’d argue about whether you could get away with just having a great product. Or whether you could take an organization that was spectacular at sales and marketing and sell anything. Ultimately, for most companies, I personally concluded that you’d need both of these skills to be really successful in the B2B world.
In the last two or three years, I’ve witnessed something new: a hiring crisis so severe that it is crippling startup’s abilities to get products built on time, and starving them of the talent they need to market and sell those products. There is an intense skills shortage that has been created by the explosion in startups over the past few years.
Something important has changed in the recruiting process: the best people are almost never on the market, and you are going to have to develop recruiting processes that find passive candidates that are not looking to leave their current job. In many cases, it will take months or years of relationship building with these candidates to find the right moment when they are open to considering a change. And closing them takes greater selling efforts than in the past due to the intense competition over the good candidates.
This leads me to believe that there is now a third crucial startup skill that needs to be developed: Recruiting.
Much like sales and marketing, recruiting is a funnel process that needs attention at the top of the funnel (ToFU) -Sourcing, middle of the funnel (MoFU) -Evaluating, and at the bottom of the funnel (Selling), as well as in a fourth phase, On-Boarding, after you have successfully hired someone.
Click here to read the full post on my blog, forEntrepreneurs, where I’ll take you step by step through the Recruiting Funnel from sourcing to close, and how to use it to build your brand, leverage your VCs, and hire the best executives for your team.