Hu­man re­sources

Element - - Business -

The se­cret to at­tract­ing the right team is to look for them in the right places. A bril­liant ex­am­ple of this lately was ‘The Shoul­der Tap’, a global search by tech en­tre­pre­neur Derek Han­d­ley. Han­d­ley em­ployed a team of en­trepreneurs, sci­en­tists, in­no­va­tors and even ac­tors to star along­side him­self in a video ask­ing for ap­pli­cants for the job of be­ing his sec­ond-in-com­mand. He re­ceived 1000 ap­pli­cants from more than 30 coun­tries and has since em­ployed two deputies to join the Han­d­ley Foun­da­tion, which aims to de­velop en­tre­pre­neur­ial lead­er­ship in New Zealand and of­fers grants for in­spir­ing pro­jects.

Few start-ups can call on such a line-up of heavy­weights to pub­licly en­dorse their HR re­cruit­ment drive (let alone tech­ni­cal staff to pro­duce it), but you get the gist: cre­ativ­ity is key to at­tract­ing cre­ative peo­ple. Han­d­ley says that his intention was to in­spire peo­ple to be part of some­thing which will have a pos­i­tive ef­fect on so­ci­ety and the en­vi­ron­ment, and to con­nect with peo­ple through their val­ues and not their skill set. He also ap­proaches re­cruit­ment as yet an­other form of mar­ket­ing – with over 15,000 peo­ple view­ing the video in its first three weeks, it has cer­tainly achieved that. Says Han­d­ley: “The world of cre­ative ad­ver­tis­ing, dig­i­tal think­ing and re­cruit­ment need to meet, have sex and make a ton more ba­bies.”

Han­d­ley also ex­plained that he made it part of a wider con­ver­sa­tion by en­cour­ag­ing peo­ple to ‘shoul­der tap’ friends and col­leagues they thought would be per­fect for the job. It en­cour­aged sharing. Those who were rec­om­mended were sent per­son­alised teasers to en­cour­age them to ap­ply. “We also asked ap­pli­cants to name a so­cial is­sue they cared deeply about,” said Han­d­ley. “Their is­sue was trans­formed into a tweet that in­cluded #theshoul­der­tap hash­tag, and cc’d to the New Zealand Prime Min­is­ter’s twit­ter han­dle, @johnkeypm, just for good mea­sure.”

Kiwi tech en­tre­pre­neur Derek Han­d­ley.

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