If I've learned one thing in building my own business from the ground up, it's that you can only take it so far by yourself. At some point, your small team is going to hire others to take you to the next level, that's just how it works. In most cases, these hidden gem employees are already working happily for another company, and sometime's that's your competition.
If you're in a management or hiring position you may relate to this struggle. The team over at The Hustle has a straightforward way of approaching ideal employees, as their recruitment letter oozes personality and gets the point across in an intelligent way.
Here's an example of a recruitment letter:
"First, thanks for talking today. Really loved hearing where you are.
After we talked today, in my opinion, you should do one of two things:
1. Quit tomorrow and start your own company. It will be scary as hell, may not pay off, but could be super rewarding and educational.
2. Quit ASAP and join The Hustle where you'll help us grow to 1m users, build a team that becomes a growth machine, help us launch new products and monetize our audience, and be a massive part a culture changing brand.
3. Stay put. I think we both have similar opinions on that one. You'll earn a big-ass salary for a long time but will grow soft, fat, and, worst of all, complacent.
I'd avoid option #3 like the plague.
There are a ton of pros and cons for doing #1. I did it. You'll be in charge of your own destiny, you'll feel alive, and you'll (most likely) have few regrets.
Now, onto option #2: joining The Hustle.
Like we discussed, I think there are a few reasons why you should do it:
1. There's little downside: In my opinion, The Hustle's most likely worst case scenario is that we grow very little and are a nice profitable business that makes $5m a year in revenue for the next 5-10 years and kicks off a good little dividend. Honestly, that's my nightmare and I'd rather go bankrupt than be mediocre and not grow. But, for you, that's not that bad.
You'll always have a good salary, will have visibility (media companies are super public and everyone will know you were part of us), and you'll learn how to operate a business since you'll be part of the high-level decision making.
And, if things suck and I don't live up to my ambition, you'll quit after 6 months and do option #3, #1, or get another super high paying gig somewhere else.
2. You have the chance to be impactful: We have 14 people right now. We're tiny. And, this position is a senior role. The plan is to have you manage a team that becomes a growth machine. Additionally, you'll be part of the decision making the process to think of and execute new ideas.
3. You'll learn a ton: And finally, you'll learn a ton. My co-founder and I know how to scale to $Xk in monthly rev in our sleep. We know how to make small but meaningful amounts of money, how to launch successful products with zero resources, and how to hustle like crazy to make our first million. You don't. We'll teach you. But you know what we haven't done yet? Scale from $Xm/year to $100m. You'll teach us that, we'll teach you the other stuff.
Obviously, I think you should do #2. We have a stellar team but are missing your type of personality. But, regardless if you do #1 or #2, don't do #3.
OK, so onto my offer. As I explained at the office, I can't beat $XYZk. I can't even come close. We'll do ~$XYZm in revenue this year and have 14 other people to look after. So, while I want to give you what you're worth, I can't do it now.
So, that said, here's what I can offer [adapted for this post]:
Cash salary: _________________
Other perks: _________________
I can't put a cash amount on the equity because I think it's unethical and maybe even illegal, but you're smart and can make some assumptions.
OK. Give it a think. Then, say "yes, I'm in." I know this is a bit of a leap for you, but you only live once and now's a chance to walk the walk.
Let me know,
- Sam Parr"
This letter has a 100 percent success rate. One of my personal favorite lines, is that you shouldn't spend time or money on being boring, and in this case it surely rings true. This recruitment letter is persuasive and confident, and most importantly, it got the job done.