I recently attended VatorSplash here in San Francisco, and I had the fortune of listening to Renaud Laplanche, CEO of Lending Club speak about a variety of topics. The one that struck me most wasn't about innovation (which is one thing Vator is all about) it was about hiring. My ears perked up.

There's no shortage of information about hiring on Inc.com; Tony Hsieh let us in on the hiring snafus at Zappos. So I'll add this article to the list because it seems so obvious but it's not. It's about how a B-player can ruin your business, or at least take years away from where your business "should be."

Renaud laid it out simply: when you hire a B-player, they'll do an okay job and there's not really a reason to fire them. But B-players can do a few damaging things to your business:

  1. They'll either hire mediocre people just like them or even worse, C-players, making an increasingly larger portion of your business run by them.
  2. Your A-players will leave because they don't want to work on a mediocre team and they get sick of the general feeling of not being able to get things done.

You've got to nip your B-players in the bud. Either get them to "A" status by coaching and mentoring them, or cut them loose. You don't want to look back and think about where your business "could have" been.

How have you dealt with B-players on your team? I'd love to hear your challenges and successes.

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