How to Hire Only A-players ⦨ Hiring Excellence: Unveiling the Levers to Attract and Retain A-Players ⦨ Midstage Institute

How to Hire Only A-players

Who is a bigger problem in your business that WHAT

Who is a bigger problem in your business than what you are working on.

A famous saying by Geoff Smart, the person who told us that hiring the right people is much more important than what strategies you come up with and how you execute them.

Now, how to hire only A-players for your business is a key question that I get from scaleups all the time. Here are some of the levers we look at to make hiring only A-players for your business a reality.


Always Be Sourcing

Always Be Sourcing

What that means is: we are not only looking for people when we actually have a position open, which makes us desperate and makes us go with people that may not be quite perfect for the job. But we’re always looking for people, even if we have no position open, we are always recruiting. We are always interviewing people and we basically get better and better at keeping a timeline open and a funnel of people that may, one day, want to join our company.

Promise of a Reference Check

Promise of Reference Check

A key component we learned from Geoff Smart is the “Promise of a Reference Check”. So it’s not: “Could you tell me how you worked with that person?”, but: “When I make a call to that person, how will they tell me you worked with them?” This keeps people much more honest than unfortunately you can normally expect them to be in a job interview.

Standardized Interviews

Standardized Interviews

I cannot believe how many companies let everyone just do an interview in their own style, which does not really give you the reliability of getting all the information out of the candidate. A standardized interview process, typically also with paired interviewers, will do a lot to get everyone the same experience, get all the information out of candidates and you will be able to make the right choice of the right A-player to join your business.

Now to pull this all together, we’ve summarized Geoff’s work in an A-player tool. It’s a double worksheet that you can download for free.

Preparing to Hire an A-player

This worksheet “Preparing to Hire an A-Player: Scorecard and Sourcing” is available for download below.

Preparing to Hire an A-Player

Get a copy of Roland Siebelink’s “Preparing to Hire an A-player: Scorecard and Sourcing” Two-page worksheet

Preparing to Hire an A-player