Friday, March 12, 2010

Hiring Seniors that are Used to Managing People

If you run a small start up, have you ever put up a job posting hiring for a CTO, CFO, COO (whatever starts with the letter C for "Chief" something?)

We have tried this before and it has resulted in some amusing applications, interviews and reflections.

Back when we were looking for a programmer we titled the job posting CTO, stating in the job description that this would be very hands on and would require the person get their hands dirty doing actual programming. We got tons of applications from over-qualified individuals that led teams of 10 to 100 people. All of them could strategize and tell other people how to get stuff done, but 100% of them couldn't code (or aren't as good at it as they used to be when they were at the programmer level).

The point is, for start ups it doesn't really make sense to hire somebody that senior off the bat, because seniors will tell you that they are used to directing and telling other people what to do. Why would you hire somebody like that when you have NOBODY for them to guide, direct, coach, etc.? Waste of time and money.

What are your thoughts on this one?

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