Hiring Right & Goodbyes

When the right hire resigns, it’s always a sad goodbye.

In 2015, when I was on a hire-binge (aka the time I had to hire 30+ people to start the two programs IN ONE WEEK), I stumbled upon a young student that seemed shy, but aced his interview. He was quiet, doesn’t seek for attention to himself, but so eager to do more than what he was asked to do.

When it was time to shrink the team, we found him a new role. Although he was no longer one of the younglings I manage, he was still in the company with a new position. He was the right person for the job; well connected, enthusiastic, show initiative, and most importantly, UNDERSTANDS THE BRAND.

Knowing the character of the company you work for is crucial, because once you know this — you are able to think about what elements that the brand WANT to be associated with and make better decisions on the field.

He was that person. Still is.

This wasn’t an exit interview. I was no longer his manager. But we took the time to speak for a few short hours about his last day.

Here’s what I have realized in the past few months about young people: trust them enough to do their job themselves, but be there to guide them when they ask for your presence.

In a young company that is often mobile, where we are not bound by geographical location, the importance of meeting face to face is often overlooked.

Sometimes I think my team is so independent that I don’t need to be there for them, but there are times where I’m absolutely stuck on a problem and I wish my direct manager was there to help me figure it out. Again, being a mobile team means we miss out on helping each other when it’s not required.

These are the things we forget to do, because we are so occupied with what we have to accomplish daily.

My former manager used to tell me, “After I finish my task, I will always go to other departments and say ‘Hey, outside of my responsibilities, what else can I do to help you at this event/project?’. Because when you are a small team trying to do big things, you have to help each other.”

So here’s a reminder to myself: be there more (physically) for the team. Yeah it looks like they have shit figured out, but showing up and giving recognition for a good job — always good morale.