How to Scale Your Firm Quickly with New Recruiters

QUESTION: I need some advice. I have a lot of assignments on my plate, too many to handle by myself and on a very tight deadline. They are all fully retained. However, they are all from the same client. I also do not have a great marketing process in place yet, so I do not have many req’s coming in behind these. I need to hire some people to (1) help me with my desk and current workload, and (2) to do the marketing for me since I clearly do not enjoy it. How do you recommend I quickly find, hire, and train these people without completely putting me behind in my schedule and my current workload, keeping in mind I do not have payroll and a benefits package set up yet.  – Mike

ANSWER: That is easy. There are payroll companies that will set you up on payroll in 5 minutes, but I am just tackling the easy things first. 

I had the exact same problem in 1996 for the first time when Cisco System said that would bring you on, but I had to guarantee us 14 hires per month.  At the time it was me and 1 or 2 people. When they asked if I could you handle that? I said, absolutely.  

So when I got that contract, I flew out to San Jose to meet with them, I ran some ads, I did some recruiting, I brought on a training class of 5 people. I do not know what the right number for you, Mike, is, but it is probably 2 or 3, especially if, in reading this, all your business is retained. I would have a training class every morning for a half hour to 45 minutes.  

During the day, I would not allow them to interrupt me. In the training class, I would teach them recruiting 101 and begin with flip marketing. You can teach one of them flip marketing and have him or her part time during the day to do the business development for you. Then you can say, okay, we are going to break at 11:45 right before lunch, we are going to have a 15-minute group Q&A on what you ran into in the morning. Then everyone goes to lunch, and then you come back and execute, you leave me alone, and then we will have a group Q&A at 4:30 until 4:45.  

This way, you really protect your time, between say 8:30 and 11:45 and after lunch until the end of the day, for you to be really, really, focused on fulfillment and that you are simultaneously bringing other people on.  

The assignment you put the new recruiters on, Mike, are not the retained assignments. You find contingency openings that you are not accountable to get them to recruit on so that they just exercise that recruiting muscle. That would probably be the best way to scale quickly. 

Thanks for the question.  

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