They say the best candidates for your job opening are already working happily. The best employees are already employed and are most sought after. They may not even be looking at your job posting. The unfortunate reality of today’s job market is that job vacancies only attract those who are looking to change jobs or the ones who are currently jobless.
So how can you attract great employees if they may not even see your job posting?
There is only one way, headhunting or poaching employees from your competitors. While each business is different and each of them needs a separate skill set, there are ways to attract good employees over from another company. But first, you need to grab their attention. Here are a few examples that can help you come up with a version that works for you.
Electronic Arts wanted to hire talent from their rival game company Radical Entertainment. So they placed a billboard right opposite to their rivals HQ and put out an ad in ASCII code, can you think of a better nerd attractor?
One head-hunter, David Perry, went undercover as a snack vendor to find out the name of a top executive and then poached him from right under the nose of his bosses. Perry even posed as a waiter at a Christmas party to get face time with a high-powered executive he wanted to hire for a client.
As a business, it is best if you hire a skilled head-hunter to poach. This way, you keep your hands clean and leave the smart work to a professional.
If you operate in a niche, you have to be extra careful with your approach as poaching will cost in terms of your relationship with your hire’s ex-boss.
If you already know who you want to recruit, take the time to figure out what drives them. Highly successful employees are not motivated just by money. If an employee will leave his current job because you offered more money, he will quit your business when someone else offers him a better pay package.
Accomplished people are moved by purpose and if you can prove to them your purpose is similar to theirs, recruiting would be quite easy.
If you are hiring in a specific niche, it is also important to check if your potential hire has signed any form of a non-compete clause. There is no point in hiring someone who cannot be in the same industry due to his previous contractual agreements.
While you are poaching from your competitors, they may pay you back in the same kind. So, keep a close vigil on your own house. Just when you thought you have put your best team together, your top salesman may say he is quitting.
Watch your folks, motivate them and give them a purpose. If your employees are motivated, it automatically spreads the word and recruiting someone from outside becomes easier. Your potential hire may actually have a friend or a colleague already working in your business and if so, it is not even poaching.