One Kings Lane CEO Doug Mack has been maniacally recruiting new executives—four in the last six months.
They are top talent, too, coming from places like Intuit, Skype, and Amazon.com.
Jean Sini, OKL’s new chief technology and product officer, comes from Intuit’s Mint.com.
New general counsel Susan Stick joins from Skype.
New HR chief John Anderson—OKL calls him “chief people officer”—previously worked at Amazon.com’s Quidsi unit.
And Sascha Jamall, VP of brand development, worked at Michaels, the crafts-store chain.
Here are Mack’s tips on how to get the talent you want.
“I look for companies that have been acquired.” Sini, Stick, and Anderson were all in that situation. (Jamall was the exception, but with his sourcing experience, he was just the right fit, Mack says.)
Wait for the right time. “You don’t want to be a vulture,” Mack says, circling around companies right after an acquisition. And the executives you want to hire are the types who will want to see things through after a deal and take care of their people. “1 to 2 years in, post-deal, is a really good time,” Mack says.
Be relentless. When he was courting an eBay marketer, Greg Fant, for a job at One Kings Lane, Mack needed to undergo dental surgery. But he had a dinner meeting with Fant and couldn’t be out of it. Plus he was about to leave on a trip for New York. So he persuaded his dentist to postpone the operation and he kept the dinner date. Fant was sick. Mack was in pain. But they sealed the deal. “It was a short dinner,” Mack recalls.
Call in favours. To persuade Sini to join, Mack turned to LinkedIn chairman and founder Reid Hoffman, an angel investor in One Kings Lane. The only time that worked was Memorial Day. Mack asked, Hoffman agreed, Sini did the interview. The good news: Hoffman was impressed.
Do the first meeting yourself. Mack works with recruiters to develop a list of recruiting targets, but he doesn’t have them screen candidates in person—he does that. The point, he says, is to bring them into the experience of working at your company from the beginning of the process.