No. 1: Slight Creative Freedom
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From Rob Fulton of Exponential Black: You don't want to hand someone the keys to the castle, but you want to be able to trust them and let them KNOW you trust them for their talents and skills. When I hire a new key tech hire, I let them know I like their work and won't be forcing them into tech slavery, but rather, allowing them to lead on their own projects as I see fit. By giving them this amount of authority (albeit small) it allows them to stay motivated and gives them a deeper purpose and meaning within the overall project.
No. 2: A Trip to Italy
From John Rampton of Host: As a token of good faith, we paid for an all-expenses-paid vacation to Italy for him and his family for a week. Good tech talent is hard to come by in San Francisco and when you can get someone, make sure they know how much you want them to be part of the team. This cost our startup a bit of cash, but it's paid off over the past eight months since he joined our team. Now he knows he's really a part of our family. He works harder than any employee that I've ever worked with.
No. 3: A Modern Atmosphere
From Sam Saxton of Salter Spiral Stair and Mylen Stairs: Tech candidates know better than to expect the campus-like atmospheres of Google and Apple everywhere they go, but that doesn’t make cubicles and rigidity any more appealing.
No. 4: A Burnout-Free Zone
From Laura Roeder of MeetEdgar.com: Most startups expect their team to "hit it hard" 24/7, but at MeetEdgar.com we have a different point of view. Crazy hours lead to stressed out, unhappy employees. At our company we work 40 hour weeks, with no contact on the weekend. You're not expected to check email at all hours, or always be "on call." Especially for technical hires, this feels like a huge breath of fresh air! A no-burnout schedule attracts high quality employees who will stick with you long term.
No. 5: Equity
From Brock Stechman of DivvyHQ: A common way to attract key tech employees is to give them an ownership stake in your company. Offering equity or incentive units is smart and will pay off in the long run for both the employee and the company. You want key employees to be “all in” and devoted to the long-term success of your company. By giving key employees equity, they realize that the success of the company will directly impact their personal success.
No. 6: The Best Fit for His Family
From Adam Stillman of SparkReel: One individual we were speaking with had a newborn son, and he kept responding to our thoughts and ideas in the mindset as a new father. Instead of sending more offers his way, we said, "Why don't you talk with your wife. You two decide how this can be the best home for both of you, and let us know." He was very appreciative and their requests were very reasonable: working from home when needed, a specific kind of health insurance, etc. This was the beginning of a very good relationship and was helpful in convincing him to leave his current place of employment.
The Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched StartupCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses.