Consider These 11 Tips to Better Recruit Senior-Level Employees

11 Important Considerations When You Are Recruiting Senior Level Employees

Recruiting for a senior-level position is a completely different ball game than hiring at entry level. Your pool of qualified candidates is extremely narrow, but you still need to thoroughly vet a person who’s going to have a lot of influence and authority over your organization. Many members of Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) have gone through the leadership hiring process before, so we asked them this question:

“What should leaders keep in mind when preparing to recruit someone for a senior-level position in their company?”

Recruiting Senior Level Employees

Here’s what YEC community members had to say:

1. Get Everyone on the Same Page Before Recruiting

“To recruit effectively at the senior level, all decision-makers must share a vision of the ideal candidate. Companies often miss the mark on this critical aspect. Consider “best case” experience, personality traits, motivating factors, etc. Hone the picture until everyone is in agreement about whom they want to attract. This enables the hiring team to find (and ultimately hire) that ideal person.” ~ Jackie Ducci, Ducci & Associates

2. Offer Them More Than a Paycheck

“Recruiting senior-level talent isn’t all about how much money you offer them. Whether it’s healthcare and other benefits, flexible schedules, paid vacation or opportunities for professional growth, offering more than just a big paycheck is what will attract senior-level candidates to your company. They’re probably already making good money, so you need to offer something more.” ~ Chris ChristoffMonsterInsights

3. Proactively Search for Passive Candidates

“If you’re looking for the ideal C-suite candidate, chances are they’re already employed and aren’t actively looking for a new position. An Experteer study showed that 97 percent of senior candidates want to be found or discovered. Use tools like LinkedIn to target potential executive hires with relevant experience and don’t be afraid to reach out to them directly.” ~ Thomas SmaleFE International

4. Listen to Their Ideas

“When hiring for a senior-level position, ask them for ideas and ways that they would take the company to the next level. You want to be able to bounce ideas off each other in an organic way. Brainstorm with them to see how their brain works and if they are someone you’d want to brainstorm ideas with.” ~ Jared AtchisonWPForms

5. Consider Their Long-Term Future With the Company

“Many people hire for today’s job description, but when you’re looking at hiring senior level people, you need to ensure they will fit the company’s future vision at that position as well. You’d hope to make a good hire that lasts a long time, so be sure when you hire that individual that they’ll fit the company’s future vision at that position.” ~ Jared WeitzUnited Capital Source Inc.

6. Be Patient, But Persistent

“Proactivity helps because the process usually isn’t going to be a fast one. Start recruiting as soon as you think you have a position open. Research your competitors to see what kind of packages they offer to senior level folks. Be patient but persistent during the process, because it is going to take time.” ~ Andrew SchrageMoney Crashers Personal Finance

7. Consider Their Personality Traits

“Know the kind of traits you want from a senior-level recruit that will mesh with the organization and the rest of the executive team. This is critical to ensure that executives are a united front and sterling example of what the culture means. ” ~ Serenity GibbonsNAACP

8. Seek a Strong Cultural Fit

“Manager and director-level hires will play a huge role in influencing the culture of your organization. Make sure you hire individuals who are both qualified for the job and are already a strong cultural fit for your company. Otherwise, you run into issues where their actions, behaviors and decisions clash with the way the rest of your team operates, leading to confusion and chaos.” ~ Firas KittanehAmerisleep

9. Look for a Track Record of Results in Your Industry

“It’s easy to get impressed by someone’s resume and experience, especially for executives. Resist this at all costs and look for the most important thing of all: a track of results in the specific industry or domain in which they will be working at your company. You want people who will measurably move the needle for your company, and those who did it in the past often do it in the future.” ~ Justin FaermanConscious Lifestyle Magazine

10. Set Clear Expectations During the Hiring Process

“You need to work extremely closely with senior hires to confirm they mesh with your team, no matter their skills or culture fit. High-performing senior hires bring incredible leverage, but they also run the risk of creating thrash and bringing down the performance and mood of the company. Before you hire, communicate clear expectations and then “over-manage” until they’re met.” ~ Aaron Schwartz, Passport

11. Consider Internal Promotions First

“Look for people who could move up before you bring in someone from the outside. There may be some disappointed achievers of you fail to promote from within first.” ~ Nicole Munoz, Nicole Munoz Consulting


The Young Entrepreneur Council The Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only organization comprised of the world's most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched StartupCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses.