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Designing the Perfect Staff

An Aussie entrepreneur went to San Francisco for funding. She got it--along with a lesson in making great hires.

June 26, 2014
Fast Company
by Nicholas ­Fonseca

"The first time I went to San Francisco, I met with Lars ­Rasmussen [a Danish software engineer who helped create Google Maps, currently works for Facebook, and became a seed-round investor for Canva]. He was really impressive in helping me find the right technical co­founder.

I would go to every conference, every event, every talk I could get to. I was cold-­calling people, emailing people on LinkedIn. I would take people's résumés back to Lars and get his advice. And he would almost always say, 'They're not good enough.' And then I would take him a person--a physical person! And he would interview them. And he would come back to me and say, 'Well, we can't take that person either. They're not up to the technical bar.' This continued for ages. I got frustrated and I thought, Surely it's better to just start saying yes, so we can get going with this mission, rather than just saying no to everyone. But eventually, when we got the right person [Cameron Adams], it made all the difference. Once we'd met that bar that Lars set, it really helped set the right standard. And now we've been able to build a team of 22 pretty amazing ­people."

Designing the Perfect Staff

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