for W3c validation
The Pmarca Guide to Startups, part 1: Why not to do a startup.” Though I’ve never hired anyone, I found Marc’s reason number 4 interesting — hiring is hard.
Fourth, hiring is a huge pain in the ass.
You will be amazed how many windowshoppers you’ll deal with.
A lot of people think they want to be part of a startup, but when the time comes to leave their cushy job at HP or Apple, they flinch — and stay.
Going through the recruiting process and being seduced by a startup is heady stuff for your typical engineer or midlevel manager at a big company — you get to participate vicariously in the thrill of a startup without actually having to join or do any of the hard work.
As a founder of a startup trying to hire your team, you’ll run into this again and again.
When Jim Clark decided to start a new company in 1994, I was one of about a dozen people at various Silicon Valley companies he was talking to about joining him in what became Netscape.
I was the only one who went all the way to saying “yes” (largely because I was 22 and had no reason not to do it).
The rest flinched and didn’t do it.
And this was Jim Clark, a legend in the industry who was coming off of the most successful company in Silicon Valley in 1994 — Silicon Graphics Inc.
How easy do you think it’s going to be for you?
Then, once you do get through the windowshoppers and actually hire some people, your success rate on hiring is probably not going to be higher than 50%, and that’s if you’re good at it.
By that I mean that half or more of the people you hire aren’t going to work out. They’re going to be too lazy, too slow, easily rattled, political, bipolar, or psychotic.
And then you have to either live with them, or fire them.
Which ones of those sounds like fun?
Though I know many people are always casually looking for jobs because they don’t truly love their current job, I guess I didn’t realize the complexity “window shoppers” add to the hiring process for businesses, particularly small companies without full time recruiters. It does make sense — people love to feel wanted. The recruitering process is much the same as “Rush” process that takes place at fraternities. Rush chairmen (the people in charge of signing pledges) have to deal with the numerous window shoppers that just hang out in the Greek system, going to every party, getting free beer, and looking for girls. It’s the rush chairs’ job to weed out the casual rushees from the serious potential pledges.
The post hasn’t changed my mind — I’m still an entrepreneur, even if it is hard.