This week we have a bonus episode of the podcast with Jeff Hyman, Founder and Chief Talent Officer of Strong Suit, a firm that helps build Rockstar top-teams for VC & PE portfolio companies. In addition to founding Strong Suit, Jeff is an Adjunct Professor at the Kellogg School of Management, is the Author of The Ultimate Guide to Hiring Growth Rockstars and the Host of the iTunes rated 5-star Strong Suit Podcast, and is CEO-in-Residence at Sterling Partners, a $6B Chicago PE firm. Along the way to founding Strong Suit, Jeff has raised $55M in venture capital, and has been CEO and Founder of 4 different companies, including Chicago-based Retrofit, where he is now Chairman.

Jeff joins me on the program today to talk about Finding and Hiring Rockstars at your Startup and how to avoid costly mistakes in this crucial process.

Topics we discuss in this episode include:

  • Jeff’s background and what led him to building a company in the healthcare space
  • The astonishing number of times Jeff got rejected before one of the world’s most prolific investors said “yes” to him
  • How Jeff defines a “rockstar”
  • How a busy founder can build in more time to focus on recruiting
  • How to balance hiring for talent vs. culture
  • How Jeff ensures he hires for diversity among teams
  • The best questions to ask during the actual interview

Links and Resources:

  • The Strong Suit 8 Immutable Truths of Talent for VC & PE Companies.
    • 1. People are the ultimate competitive differentiation
      • Creating a culture that draws in talent is the only way to stay ahead for the long term.
    • 2. There is no such thing as a perfect candidate
      • You’ll be waiting forever. Instead, identify the must-have competencies & never settle.
    • 3. Recruiting is sales & marketing, not human resources
      • It’s all about the funnel. First, plug the leaks. Then, fill the funnel.
    • 4.You must give top-performers a reason to listen
      • Rockstars have never had more options. You need to create a compelling employer value proposition.
    • 5. Recruiting must be based on things that are predictive of success
      • DNA is far more predictive than experience, education, or personality.
    • 6. A top-performer at one company is not always a top-performer at another
      • There are no shortcuts, even if they worked at your competitor.
    • 7. Using your “gut” in recruiting is right 50% of the time
      • But which 50%? Trust the process, and increase your accuracy to 90% or more.
    • 8. To build a successful business, winning the war for talent must be your #1 priority
      • You must invest at least 30% of your time on recruiting & retention.

Connect with Jeff

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Episode 31: Jeff Hyman, Founder of Strong Suit, on Finding & Hiring Rockstars at Your Startup


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