How to Create a Dynamite Team

Julien Brandt

Having a happy, engaged, quick-thinking workforce is essential for business growth. I know that’s not rocket science, but creating that kind of team can often seem like it. We have a team I’m proud of at Digitopia and I’ve learned a lot over the years about what it takes to make sure they’re happy, their talents are being utilized and the business is growing (last but not least!).

Here are my four tips for hiring the right people for the job:

Hire Easygoing People

Southern California has an easygoing feel. Our office mirrors that.We have a large garage door that opens up to take in the California sun and we welcome co-workers pets with open arms--and treats.

Our employees also mirror this feel. Being easygoing has received a bad rep in the business world. To me, it doesn’t mean that someone is lazy or careless, it means that they know how to appropriately handle stress and make other people comfortable in their presence. My team is never ‘too busy’ to help another employee, even when they really are swamped. And when they’re feeling stressed (we try to avoid this), it doesn’t mean the rest of the office is subjected to their stress.

When interviewing, I try to get a feel for each person by asking about hobbies, what inspires them and what their goals are. This is going to be someone whom my team and I will be spending 40+ hours per week with. They must be easy to work with.

Bonus: If they’re great with my team, they’ll probably make our clients feel at ease too.

Hire Ambitious People

I want my company to grow. And I want my employees to grow happily with my company. That’s why I hire ambitious people. I, of course, want to know how they plan to fulfill the duties outlined in the job description, but I also want to know how they aspire to grow personally and professionally. It’s easy to sense ambition in a person. They’re comfortable with change. They think outside the box. They want to solve problems.

Tip: Part of our job application process includes creating a short video. There are no requirements for the video. This is in part to get to know the applicant, but it’s also to see 1) if they take the extra step to create the video and 2) what makes them tick. Did they put effort into this fun task? If they’re passionate about creative endeavors, I want them on my team.

Hire Based on Your Company’s Core Values

I have come to realize the importance of establishing solid core values and how those values come into play when building your team. We look for people with similar values but above all, we look to make sure they understand and appreciate our values. As an example, one of our values is “Be Scrappy.” Being scrappy is my way of saying that we are resourceful and that we always figure it out and get it done. Based on this value, we look for people that demonstrate an ability to solve problems and be self-sufficient.

Hire Hilarious People

I’m happy to say that everyone in our office laughs at least twice a day (rough estimation, it’s probably more). Our team is both hard-working and fun-loving. And that makes work a great place to be. We go on evening office outings to local bars from time-to-time and let our morning meetings go on too long. Why? Because we not only enjoy collaborating over work projects, but we enjoy each other’s company. Laughter eases tension and makes people happy. And, as a rule, people like happy people.

Tip: Our local SEO specialist, Jenny Foster, likes to ask interviewees how many times a day they laugh. And we know this strategy works because our team is constantly laughing.

Digitopia is passionate about helping businesses grow by tapping into the power of social media and SEO. To discuss how we can help you grow your business, contact us today.

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