Newsletter #71: The Hiring & Firing Edition

Andrew Weaver
February 15, 2021

Happy Friday

I hope this newsletter finds you well and safe, wherever you are in the world.

Having recently added our own recruitment service, we thought it an interesting topic to base this weeks newsletter around.

This week we look at …
Benefits of Diversity
Cost of Wrong Hires
Compensation Setting
Dangers of Hiring For Fit

We also introduce a blog series written by CTO member Mostafa Khattab that looks at the challenges he has faced within his Dubai based start up …. “Diary of an Accidental CTO, Part 1”

Enjoy the read.
Enjoy the weekend more.

Andrew Weaver
andrew@cto.academy

ps: we’ve also transformed our home page, trying to make it a cleaner and easier UX to find the service you’re looking for. Hope you like it, but if you don’t … please tell me why! 

Diversity = Profitability

A 2018 McKinsey & Company study of 1,000 companies found that organisations in the top quartile for gender diversity on their leadership teams were 21% more likely to experience high profitability. Meanwhile, ethnic and cultural diversity resulted in a 33% increase in profitability performance

Diversity in tech has long been a problem and some of the stats remain truly appalling, but with the bottom line stats that matter … it should be approached as a business development tool, not a box ticking exercise.

We wrote an article covering this topic, Diversity = Profitability, Sorting Your Recruitment Strategy.

Cost Of A Bad Hire

We’ve all been there.

They interviewed so well. Great CV, good references, felt like a good fit but within weeks and maybe days, you know (and they probably know) that it’s wrong.

Values, attitude, quality of work are not aligned with your team and your expectations.

You probably need to move quickly, accept you made the wrong hire and start again. You also need to look at your hiring process to try and avoid it happening again because according to a 2017 survey from CareerBuilder companies who made a poor hire lost an average of $14,900 per poor hire.  

That survey is extrapolated further within this article Poor Hiring Costs By The Numbers 

How To Set Compensation Using Common Sense Principles

Article with our friends over on CTO Universe looked into the sometimes thorny issue of how to set compensation.

It looks in detail at what they describe as ‘Good / Bad compensation systems’ and …

“Compensation has always been one of the most confusing parts of management to me. Getting it right is obviously extremely important. Compensation is what drives our entire economy, and you could look at the market for labor as one gigantic resource-allocating machine in the same way as people look at the stock market as a gigantic resource-allocating machine for investments”

You can review the article here.

The Dangers Of Hiring For Fit

There is a lot of talk when recruiting about finding the right fit, about making sure new team members are aligned with the culture and ethos of the company.

That works great if all is positive and sunny. If they’re another exciting member of a positive culture.

But what if the culture of your organisation is less than diverse? What if you’re at risk of selecting another similar face and fuelling an insular (toxic) culture? 

The guard rails of a company are often shaped from the beginning by founders and once entrenched, can be very hard to shift. Recruitment can be a critical process for shaping change and this WSJ article looks at the dangers of hiring for cultural fit …

“What most people mean by culture fit is hiring people they’d like to have a beer with,” says Patty McCord, a human-resources consultant and former chief talent officer at Netflix. “You end up with this big, homogenous culture where everybody looks alike, everybody thinks alike, and everybody likes drinking beer at 3 o’clock in the afternoon with the bros,”

“Diary Of An Accidental CTO, Part 1”

Mostafa Khattab is CTO at WakeCap Technologies in Dubai and a long standing CTO Academy member.

He has started to write a blog about his experiences becoming a CTO as he describes it … “ahead of schedule”.

Small extract from Part 1 …

“I have been working with teams for many years but the challenge now was very different. Rather than being part of the team, now I had to start building one. Figuring out the skills we need but working that out not on the basis of “like to have” but working within a tight budget actually, a very tight budget, this was about laser focus on what is the priority now. Everything else has to wait”

For the rest, have a look at “Diary of an Accidental CTO, Part 1”

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