GB Ep 33: Why You Need to be Building a Farm Team


Today we’re talking about recruiting – more specifically, how to build a farm team or a bench. The point of having a farm team or bench is to continually recruit so you have exactly the right people ready to go when you need them.

  • When you’re ready to add someone to your team, or someone leaves, a farm team with pre-qualified candidates is great to have. [01:30]
  • If you’re a CEO, you should be recruiting 25% of the time. [01:50]
  • The people are what make the company. [02:07]
  • What I like to do is have 3-5 people for each role on the farm team. [02:19]
  • To hire for future roles, I can spec out the specifics I want by looking at similar job postings. [02:26]
  • Even if we’re not currently hiring or have a specific role for someone, if we find a candidate who is super talented, we’ll talk to them to see if we can create a role for them later because they’ll provide great value for the company. [02:44]
  • There’s nothing greater than being able to pick out your own all star team; it’s like the feeling of picking your own basketball team in elementary school. [03:21]
  • If you’re hiring for specific positions, the people already on your team need to make sure they make time for talking to candidates and treat it as a priority. [03:51]
  • If you wait until the last minute to hire people or start looking for people, the time variable can skew your decision and mess up your company in the long run. [04:25]
  • Make sure you track your hiring process. If you’re candidates aren’t looking for full-time jobs, you can help them with contracting gigs, or you can help them find what they’re looking for somewhere else. The idea is to add value to others – it will come back to you. [04:55]
[spoiler title=’Transcript’ collapse_link=’true’]

Hello everyone and welcome to another edition of Growth Bites.

Today we are going to be talking a little bit about recruiting and more specifically, how you can build a “farm team”. What I mean by farm team is, some people can have their bench, but the whole idea behind farm team or a bench is continually recruiting and you’re making sure that you have the right people ready to go when you need to, when you’re ready to add someone else or if someone leaves. It’s really important that you’re doing this and not only it is just you doing it but if your team is bigger, you need to make sure that you have key people recruiting as well.

For the CEO, if you look that past growth everywhere post or listen to some episodes, CEOs are supposed to be recruiting 25 to 30 percent of the time. You are always looking for a new talent because the whole idea you have your company is that the people are the main resource. The people are what makes the company in a nutshell. After you have the core values established, after you have the roles and responsibilities established, you want to make sure that you are continually filling up the farm team and what I like to do specifically, for each role, I want to have three to five people on the farm team, ready to go. And if I’m looking to hire for future roles, I want to pick out what I’m looking for in that role specifically. I might look at some other similar jobs, postings on LinkedIn or I might look around via Google and see what’s out there and then I can piece together my own roles and responsibilities for this new person.

Even though we’re not always hiring and we might not have a specific role for someone, if someone is super talented and someone is very hungry, we’re going to talk to them and see if we can fill out a role for them later, because that person is going to pay dividend for the company down the road. You want great people on your team and if you’re the hiring manager or you’re the business owner, there’s no bigger leverage than actually getting to pick out who you can have on your team. And that’s what I got from someone, forgot who it was exactly but it was the reason to interview. There’s nothing greater than that. For you to be able to pick your own all star team is like being in elementary school, being able to pick on who you want on your basketball team. To have that feeling is pretty amazing. You don’t get that many opportunities. When you’re starting out, you don’t realize kind of the gravity of that and it’s great.

Long story short, make sure that you have a farm team, three to five people for each role and then if you have like, for example, let’s take my company for example. Let’s say I’m looking for SEOs or PPC people or account managers that I will have the kind of lead account manager, their job will be to fill up that farm team. Perhaps they might be talking to eight people or they might be talking to sixteen people for a month. But the idea is that the people in your team need to make sure that they make time for this and they need to make sure that it’s a priority because if you wait for the last minute to actually hire people or start looking for people, that’s when you add the whole I need to hire someone fast variable and that tends to kind of get into your decision and overall, that can fuck up your company in the long run. I remember doing that just to hire the hire, those have almost never worked out. So you need to make sure that you prepare ahead of time and it’s something I wished I realized earlier.

Make sure you build up that farm team. Make sure you’re tracking it. I like to use Trello to track my hiring processes. If they’re looking for a full time gig, maybe they’re looking for a contract or gig, or maybe you can perhaps provide some value and get them a full time gig somewhere else down the line. But the idea is that you’re adding value, it’s going to come back to you, even if you’re not adding direct value to your company, you can be adding value to other people and they’re going to remember you for that. So just keep that in mind, everything kind of comes full circle.

Long story short again, build up that farm team, try to get three to five people per role and you’ll be on good spot.


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