Hiring For The grow! Gene

January 14, 2010

By Michael Mark, Creative Director/CEO @NYCA

Hiring is more and more the key to our success. We are out of the way of others in our industry and we need to be a destination point – not geographically but for services provided.

The cultural and the technically-fit fit here. One without the other won’t work. I read that those whom people like will be better on a team than those who are disliked but are stronger at their discipline. If that makes the team better and the work better, then I see that as a win, win.

Our hiring process is long and slow and deep and expensive. There are interviews over the phone, in our offices, via email, on our social site; presentations, group discussions, test projects, reference checks.  We have many of our people meeting, weighing, and prodding the candidate. All to meet people who have the ‘grow gene,’ as we call it – curious, beginner-minded though experienced in their field, irrepressible (with lots of bounce-backability); mentally strong enough to be a loner yet community-minded enough to be able to collaborate with abandon. When people say our work is great we measure that by the growth in the marketplace that the work helped stimulate. Our key indicators that we can achieve such growth are in the right people for us and our clients.

Hire slow, fire less, grow more.

Talent plus Intention turns Doubt into Action

March 18, 2009
From Michael Mark, Creative Director/CEO at NYCA

I am a mad crazy lover of talent. I twitch when the gifted are in the vicinity. And truly, if we broke down the job – because who knows what CEOs do anyway? – I am really the chief talent officer and promise maker at NYCA. So here’s what it takes to get and keep a job at NYCA.

And if you’ve got the stuff, come and share it, please.nyca-awning

Everyone who comes for an interview, at our Encinitas world headquarters, gets soulfully x-rayed by at least seven people. Some get radiation-blasted by as many as 12 NYCAers! A gauntlet of sharing and truth-seeking, laughter, green tea, power-points, theory proving, seed planting – and then they get me. Oh, I am a Pooh Bear in the sight of true talent. I will do stupid human tricks for the insatiably curious, mind-wanderers, the way-past-passionate craftspeople who do it better and do it fast and do it on budget, and the open-hearted, future-seeing, daring-to-be-mocked visionaries (they have the best jokes, too!).

Because these people make it happen every day and night.

Because they are the ones who will leap the walls of convention and breathlessly deliver the goods. Again and again.


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