I promised threads about recruiting for the next week. Here's the first one on referrals. In growth/marketing speak: referrals are your organic growth, inbound is your brand, and outbound/sourcing is your ad spend. You want to growth-hack your referrals. Here's how. 1/n
2/ Referrals (people on your team referring candidates into your recruiting pipeline) is great because it scales with your org size. They also convert higher since one of their friends is trying to convince them to join, plus they are generally not interviewing at many companies.
3/ The main disadvantage is that they tend to re-enforce your current team makeup. So if you have a diverse team, referrals will continue that diversity, but if you do not, you'll be entrenching your existing makeups which can have some real cons.
4/ A common tool for incentivizing referrals is the referral bonus (the coolest version of which is in equity IMO, although $ works well too), but I think you can do a lot more by leveraging process (referral parties) and culture (creating real pride about your referral culture).
5/ Referral parties are about making a game out of referrals by (virtually) locking 2+ teams in a room for 60 minutes and asking them them to go all out putting together a referral list. Here's how to do it.
6/ Pick 2+ teams and tell them that you're putting a 60m block on their cal to do referrals. Have their manager explain why it's important, what the roles are, etc. The key step though is to get everybody to download a CSV of all of their LinkedIn contacts beforehand.
7/ At the start of the 60m you ask people to go through every name in their CSV and put a * next to anybody great they've worked with before and a ** next to anybody they've heard great things about that they think would fit the roles.
8/ Also ask them to note whether they are comfortable reaching out to the person or whether they are comfortable with recruiting reaching out to the person or whether nobody should reach out.
9/ You tell the two teams that whomever has more * and ** candidates within 60m wins the party (your choice whether you want to have prizes or what not, more on culture later). Competition is good. At the end, you ask folks to send recruiting LI profiles of the * and ** people.
10/ After the meeting, your recruiter takes the list, works with a HM to filter, and then decides whom to reach out to (either directly or via the team member depending on the preference). For the "do not reach out" folks, just keep them on around and check-in again in a quarter.
11/ This is super efficient. It costs 60m per team member, all they have to do is look at names of people they know from LI, and then it goes into the normal sourcing efforts. It's respectful of team members as they get to choose which names to give.
12/ Efficient process. Now what about culture? Well, like most things culture, you have to praise behavior that aligns with the culture you want. So if you want a culture that emphasizes referrals, you have to praise referrals.
13/ You can call people out at all-hands (maybe every quarter, you praise the people whose referrals led to the most interviews or the most hires) or via emails or ... One thing that I really like though is the referral tree (although we don't have one right now at Plaid).
14/ A referral tree is a manifestation of who joined the company because of whom. So if Alice came because Bob referred her, there would be a link between the two people. Or if Charles joined because Diana was the most convincing person during his sell chats, same.
15/ You basically build a physical (or digital) version that represents the importance of recruiting, the candidate experience, and referrals to your organization. And then you put the tree somewhere really visible and central (your lobby, your wiki).
16/ For those who are new here, heroes / icons / prizes / manifestations are a really powerful way to create culture. When you write it out it feels contrived, but in real life it resonates. You just can't do it too much and you can't have too many icons. So pick carefully.
17/ That's it. Growth hack those referrals and good luck recruiting all of the people! Just please do not recruit Plaids, I love them too much!

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More from @jgreze

13 Jan
So with everything that happened yesterday, I have some personal news... 🌴

A 🧵
After 4 years here, I’ve decided to stay at Plaid (and in SF) to grow the team and continue building the future of fintech. The news though is that I am doubling my team this year.

Going to celebrate by tweeting recruiting tips all week. Later today: how to encourage referrals!
Speaking of: yesterday's news has been a really boon to inbound interest! Thanks to everyone who got in touch, applied, and is excited about Plaid's path as an independent company. Excited to meet and interview you!
Read 7 tweets
10 Dec 20
Under-appreciated frustration of building an API product: feature adoption is much slower than for a UI product like Slack/Instagram. Even for your very satisfied customers.

Flip side: retention is much higher.

Here’s what I wish I’d known when I joined Plaid four years ago:
1/ If you have a UI product area, introducing a new feature or product is as easy as putting it in front of the user. You can email your customers, put a modal on startup (hi @onepeloton ), etc.

The user just clicks on the thing and voila they can use it and you get feedback.
2/ For an API product, it’s more complicated bc although you can do most of these things (email, dashboard promotions, etc.) to *tell* your user about the feature. Actual usage requires coding which requires engineers, and engineers’ work requires roadmapping. That takes time.
Read 10 tweets

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