It’s time to stop talking about gender, age and geography as reasons to hire and not hire people. Hire for mindset said Jane Huxley, managing director of Pandora.
Speaking at the Daze of Disruption ‘Lessons from Disruptors’ panel which included fellow disruptors Jo Burston CEO of Rare Birds & Job Capital, Greg Ellis co-founder of Nimble, Mick Entwisle founder of Genero, Tony Faure chair of Stackla, Sound Alliance, Pollenizer, Torque Data and Zoe Roebuck founder of cosmetic company Dr Roebuck.
Failure was a big theme during the panel. The panelists discussed why we should embrace failures as an important part of disrupting and moving forward. And what incumbent companies can do to become a disruptor.
Faure said: “If I was the CEO of an incumbent company with a disruption problem I wouldn’t try to fix it myself. I would find somebody external to my business.”
Burston added: “If the person innovating within your company doesn’t succeed they should keep their job. They should be respected and celebrated for doing what they’ve done.”
Those pesky Millennials were also a topic of interest during the panel. Millennial thinking was the topic of disruption for incumbents. What advice did the panellists have for engaging and thinking like the Millennial mind?
Genero’s Entwisle said: “We definitely have to employ them. We’re a technology business that has to be on the cutting edge. We absolutely have to employ them so that we can keep up on the cutting edge of a lot of different trends and new platforms that are emerging.”
Faure added: “Millennials just aren’t good at following rules. But you don’t really want them if they are.
“They are a group of young people with an extraordinary level of freedom. They don’t want a job where they’re told what to do but if you can channel their smarts and creativity, then you’re in much better shape.”
Another theme of the panel was the problem of identifying the dickhead within your company. Nimble’s Ellis said the dickhead could be lurking anywhere within your business.
“All it takes is for two or three to sneak into your company.”
The lessons learnt are hire people who eat optimism for breakfast, embrace your failures and don’t hire dickheads.