Why It’s Worth It to Hire the Best

Posted by Chuck Kocher
On September 15, 2014

Hiring-the-bestA couple of weeks ago I talked about the benefits of hiring “failures.” The emphasis, of course was not on hiring people who are failures, but people who learned from the experience of making mistakes and are stronger and better as a result. But there’s a flip side to that. There are certain benefits that come from hiring the best people (those we might classify as “A-Players”). Here are just a few:

  • Success Breeds Success: Quality people always seem to attract other quality people. When you put smart, hard-working, honest, people in positions of leadership, they tend to hire others who share their characteristics. And high-caliber people also tend to elevate the performance of others around them. And that is one of the best ways to positively change the culture of your organization.
  • Free Yourself Up For Strategic Thinking: You know the old adage about “working on your business instead of working in your business.” One big reason leaders get sucked into working in their business is that they don’t have people they can trust to get things done. I’m not talking about integrity here. I’m talking about having people you are confident in to run the business on a day-to-day business without a lot of supervision—so that you can focus on strategic planning and stay ahead of the competition.
  • Your Business Will Be More Attractive to Potential Buyers: If you’re thinking about selling your business at some point, it’s important to have the right people in place. Buyers are usually interested in more than your intellectual property, your products and services, or your existing customers. They want to know that you have a quality team in place that won’t miss a beat once they take over.
  • Hiring Well Saves You Money: The cost of hiring extends well beyond what you pay to a headhunter or the hours your in-house HR Department spends on hiring. It’s a lot more than just the salary you pay out as well. Some experts say that the real cost of hiring the wrong person is approximately 15 times that person’s base salary. That means hiring the wrong $75,000 a year employee can cost you more than $1,000,000 before you’re done.
  • Hiring the Right Person Should Make You Money: If you get the right person in the right position, you not only save money—you should make money. Quality people make an impact on your bottom line. Of course we’re not talking about people who are satisfied with the status quo. You have to be looking for someone who is always looking for ways to do things a little better.

What all of this means is that you can’t be too casual in your hiring efforts. You don’t want to hire just to fill a position. What you’re really looking for is someone who can take that position—and the people around him or her—to the next level. That means investing time—and money—to make sure you get the kind of individual you really want for key positions in your company. That will make it a bit harder (and maybe more expensive) up front, but the long-range impact will pay dividends by saving you money, positively influencing your corporate culture, and making your business more successful for years to come.