The Entrepreneur Insiders network is an online community where the most thoughtful and influential people in America’s startup scene contribute answers to timely questions about entrepreneurship and careers. Today’s answer to the question “How do you build a strong team?” is written by David Baszucki, founder and CEO of Roblox.
Great teams are built intentionally, and they are the ultimate driver of company success and enterprise value. But scaling a great team as a company grows takes focus and hard work. Here are some tips for making the team-building process a bit more painless:
Make sure your vision, mission, and values are clear
The core to forming a great team lies within your company’s vision, mission, and values. I interview all potential candidates who walk through our doors, and often, they’re working for companies with murky strategies and no hope for exciting growth. Having a clear and lofty mission that incoming candidates can understand is crucial, as it’ll help them determine whether or not they have an opportunity to grow at your company.
Being a “great place to work” is the new entry bar in Silicon Valley. Soon, most companies will have unlimited time off and great snacks and company lunches and masseuses on call. But companies with a great vision and mission will continue to be rare.
Commit to being a company “known” for having a great team
I once interviewed a VP of engineering from a large game studio that was hiring employees really quickly. I asked him where they were getting their game developers, and he said that in order to keep up, they were hiring people without a programming background and training them to write code. Unfortunately, over time, their beautiful games suffered from technical issues, and the company was ultimately sold at pennies on the dollar.
Your executive team must discuss ahead of time what having a great team means to you. Maybe it’s looking for candidates who have some chance of being a high performer in their position, or candidates who demonstrate alignment with your company’s values. You may have many candidates who are “pretty good,” but who don’t meet your team’s standards. Like the game studio, you might be tempted to relax your standards to fill your recruiting quotas. Don’t do it.
Beef up your recruiting machine to find and process more candidates efficiently
In order to process candidates efficiently, you’ll need a great recruiting leader and a recruiting team that’s partnered with the rest of the company. For positions that are more high-level or require a unique skill, you may need more recruiters and new recruiting strategies. At Roblox, for each role we need to fill, we try to review over 250 resumes. A robust referral program and PR teams can help you do this.
Retain your great team
The easiest way to find great team members is to make sure the great team members you already have are happy and want to stick around. It’s essential to continually adapt your strategy so that your team knows you’re staying up to date with changing technology. You must be transparent through good times and bad so that everyone in your company can see how they contribute to the overall goal.
Long-term employee retention is about looking to the future and creating a bus that people want to ride. Cajoling people to stay on the bus doesn’t work at scale. Make sure you are creating a bus that provides people with a way to advance their careers, do great work, help the world, and potentially garner financial reward. It’s simple when you write it down, but it’s enormously hard work in practice.