Hiring Innovators? Hire the Future Not the Past

Hiring Innovators? Hire the Future Not the Past

So you go for this interview and one of the interviewers goes like, “Tell us about your experience in this industry” What would be your reply? Of course, you state how you worked at X, Y, Z…. And sometimes that gets you hired. That is great when hiring a person to do what was done in the past but if you are hiring for creativity history is the least indicator of how someone will perform.

Creative Talent should be hired not because of what they’ve done. But because of what they will do. You need to hire the future!

Joan Nalubega

In 2015 while I was a guest lecturer at the Social Innovation Academy I met a creative that would not get a job in any of the big companies. How did I know? Her resume wasn’t up to the required level. Joan was in her early twenties, she had just joined University. Joan had an idea of creating soap that repels mosquitoes. With no chemistry background and technicalities of soap manufacturing, she started pursuing her idea. She later started a Company called Uganics which is the brand name of her soap.

Fast forward 2020, she has been relentless in making this idea work, won numerous awards of creativity and the soap has been adopted in refugee camps by agencies. He dream is on steroids.

Looking back, what attracted me to Joan was the fact that she had Entrepreneurial talent: someone who can solve problems and get results on their own. I Coached her for a while until she went on her own.

Here is some advice. If you are looking to recruit someone with a creative bias, It’s someone who is creative in finding solutions and is not afraid to admit and fix their own mistakes. It’s someone who can explain complicated concepts simply, and not make you feel stupid while they do it. It’s confidence without arrogance, street smarts balanced with book smarts, scientific acumen paired with the passion of an artist.

I often say, “Every day you have a choice either to live in the memories of the past or in the vision of the future” Innovators live in the vision of the future so hire them based on their potential, not past results.

PS: Joan will be one of the Panelists at VelocityXperience 2020

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