From Google's wacky (and now out of favor) brain teaser interview questions to Zappos' unusual offer to pay recruits to quit if they didn't feel at home in their new job, startups and tech companies regularly pioneer new hiring practices that entrepreneurs in other industries might want to consider trying.

Here's a new one for you, courtesy of the management at payment startup Stripe: how about hiring teams, rather than individuals?

Bring your own team

Announcing the new policy in a recent blog post, Stripe engineering manager Avi Bryant invited those interested in working for Stripe to consider applying together with their existing collaborators.

"Any group of 2 to 5 people can apply as a team to Stripe, by emailing byot@stripe.com. Make sure to include resumes or CVs for each person, indicate which role each person is applying for, and a brief description of how you all know each other or have worked together in the past," he explains.

Playing on that old party invite staple, BYOB, Stripe is calling the initiative BYOT, short for 'Bring Your Own Team.' Groups who apply will go through the interview process at the same time and even be given the opportunity to work on a project together to show off their skills and group mojo. Each applicant will be free to accept or decline any resulting job offers individually, though the aim of the program is obviously to get groups to come on board en masse.

What's the rationale behind the experiment? "Maybe it's your old co-founders, your college roommates, your collaborators on an open source project, or even your siblings; whoever it is, you're stronger as a team than you are apart. Working together, each of you has a valuable advantage--you could call it a network effect--over anyone who works alone," Bryant explains. Stripe's aim is to harness the power of those personal connections.

Brilliance or lunacy?

A sort of super-charged version of the referral concept, the idea behind the new policy is clearly to lure in-demand professionals with the sweet perk of working with proven collaborators, while also getting talent to drag their cleverest and most skilled friends to the company along with them. Will it work?

Bryant admits the proof is in the pudding. "This is an experiment and we'll tweak it as we go," he writes, but he concludes: "We're excited to try it out."

What do you make of Stripe's BYOT hiring idea -- brilliance or lunacy?

Published on: May 2, 2016
The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.