AI Startups – The Only 3 Hiring Steps You Ever Need

Picture of Lillian Pierson, P.E.

Lillian Pierson, P.E.

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What are the hiring steps you need to take when looking for someone to help you in your data business? If you’re thinking about hiring someone, then don’t make another move until you watch this video where I’m about to give you the only 3 steps you’ll ever need to make to ensure your hiring investment produces an ROI for your company.

I did an earlier video on hiring mistakes, and this is the sequel video where I show you how to avoid them – I really recommend you go watch that prequel after watching this one.

YouTube URL:​–zU

If you prefer to read instead of watch then, read on…

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In case you’re new to our community, my name is Lillian Pierson and I support data professionals to become world-class data leaders and entrepreneurs.

In terms of why I’m sharing this content now, well, in fact – I’m hiring. So I thought I’d share my journey and my approach to hiring because I sure wish I had this information 8 years ago when I started hiring for my own business, Data-Mania. I’ve been way too busy with the rewrite of the 3rd edition of my book Data Science for Dummies and more data projects coming down the pipeline…So, I need another data pro to help me inside the biz.

But for now – I’m going to teach you a thing or two about hiring data professionals to support you in your data business…

Backstory Testimonial

I know what it’s like to get so many clients in your business that you don’t have enough support to help them all. That’s the situation for my student here, Jordan Goldmeier. He started our program in January 2021 and used it to land $50k contracts in the last 6 months – 6 of which were at $500/hour. Now, he’s looking to make another $100k this year based on the methods I taught him in the course, so – in order for this to happen, he’s going to need to hire some help. 

So, in this article, I’m going to pretend that this is for him. Here is what NOT to do – Hiring Mistakes You Need to Avoid, especially about why you don’t want to just throw a job on Upwork real fast and hire that way. Watch it on the blog here.

Now let’s talk about what TO DO. I’ve broken it down into 3 simple steps…

STEP 1: Casting The Net Wide

There are 3 things you need to do as part of this step.

1: Write a quality job description

  • Business mission, vision, and values
  • Clear, specific expectations for the candidate
  • Always include a red herring (a little trick to show that proves the applicant read the job description)

2: Prepare a complete application form

  • Make it long and detailed to help you assess the candidates better and weed out people that don’t care about your business
  • Include a mock-up scenario to see what they would do on something like that in real life
  • Include open-ended questions to get a better idea of their writing style and who they are
  • Make references back to the job description and ask them questions about it – you don’t want someone to apply if they don’t even take the time to read the job description

3: Share your job posting

sample social media post on hiring

  • Share it on all your social media platforms – relevant Facebook groups, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram
    • Tip: When sharing to social media, make sure to add a little extra red herring step. In this post I did, I asked them to drop a comment and send me a DM so they can get the full job description and most people failed to do that. So when you share it social, don’t just give it to them, make sure that you make them follow a process and follow instructions in order to get the job posting.
  • Share it in your email list
  • Post it to job boards
  • Post it to Upwork 
    • The job description limit is only up to 5000 characters, so you may want to upload a PDF of the full thing
    • The application questions are limited to 5 so you can just combine the questions, where possible

If you’re reading this, then it’s a pretty good bet that you’re thinking of hiring someone. So, I would love to hear from you. 

Tell me in the comments below, who are you looking to hire or what role are you hiring for? 

Maybe someone from the community is a good fit!

STEP 2: Narrowing In On The Best Applicant

There are 2 parts to this step…

PART A: The Vibe Check hiring steps you need to take

  1. Go through the applications and pick the top 2 candidates 
  2. Schedule a 20-min vibe check – not an interview,  just a personal vibe check to see what it feels like to talk to them
  3. Use calendly so you don’t have to bother about the scheduling
  4. Ask about red herring

PART B: Send small test

If they pass the vibe check, then send them a small test.

  • Send follow-up email with a similar test
  • Ask them to rank their data expertise on programming languages, etc. (assign a 1 for “no experience,” assign a 10 for “expert level”)
  • Look at results and schedule interview(s)

You can watch the demo of the small test I did here.

STEP 3: Make an offer

PART A: Hold an interview with the candidate

  • If the position is lower and non-technical, perhaps you can get by with a 20 or 30-minute interview 
  • If you’re looking to hire someone part-time, full time or for something that’s really technical, then you probably want to invest at least 60 minutes

Ask them about: 

  • Their responses thus far and ask them to explain why they responded the way they did
  • Their education
  • Any similar projects
  • Their add-on capabilities
  • Some references

PART B: Make an offer

  • Tell the person about why they were hired
  • Provide complete onboarding package
  • Reiterate role expectations, hours, pay, vacation, benefits etc.
  • Provide clear sets they need to take by a deadline in order to accept the offer

Here’s a bonus for you!

I’ve made a sample job description that you can use to pattern after when creating your own! You can get a copy of it inside of our Facebook group – Becoming World-Class Data Leaders and Entrepreneurs.

Join our community here.

You can also watch a demo of it here.

If you’re digging this real talk about the hiring steps you need to take, then I know you’re gonna love our FREE Data Entrepreneur’s Toolkit

It’s an ensemble of all of the very best, most efficient tools in the market I’ve discovered after 9 years of research and development. A side note on this, many of them are free, or at least free to get started, and they have such powerful results in terms of growing your business. These are actually the tools we use in my own business to hit the multiple 6-figure annual revenue mark.

Download the Toolkit for $0 here.

Hey, and if you liked this post about the hiring steps you need to take, I’d really appreciate it if you’d share the love with your peers by sharing it on your favorite social network by clicking on one of the share buttons below! 

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I’m a fractional CMO that specializes in go-to-market and product-led growth for B2B tech companies.
If you’re looking for marketing strategy and leadership support with a proven track record of driving breakthrough growth for B2B tech startups and consultancies, you’re in the right place. Over the last decade, I’ve supported the growth of 30% of Fortune 10 companies, and more tech startups than you can shake a stick at. I stay very busy, but I’m currently able to accommodate a handful of select new clients. Visit this page to learn more about how I can help you and to book a time for us to speak directly.

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Hi, I'm Lillian Pierson, Data-Mania's founder. We welcome you to our little corner of the internet. Data-Mania offers fractional CMO and marketing consulting services to deep tech B2B businesses.

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Fractional CMO for deep tech B2B businesses. Specializing in go-to-market strategy, SaaS product growth, and consulting revenue growth. American expat serving clients worldwide since 2012.

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