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.