Birds of a Feather, Flock Together — Recruiting the Best and Brightest

Google has continued to do things that we can observe and replicate to create success for ourselves and our companies. The Intersect Group’s CEO, Edwin Miller, has written a series of articles focused on nine separate Google principles and how to apply these to just about any working environment. These principles can be overt or disguised, but all are built into Google’s fiber and have afforded them great success.

While many other successful companies have the same underlying principles that have propagated across their culture and business, Edwin selected the Google framework due to its innovative nature. Most important, though, Google’s innovation is key to staying relevant in a
competitive landscape. Specifically, the kind of innovation often comes from endlessly expanding  one another’s ideas and actions. This series of observations discusses what each of us can learn from Google’s success.

To start us off, we examine the old saying, “Birds of a Feather Flock Together.”

Google recruited the best and brightest people into their company, and they provided a competitive and safe environment where the culture could grow and evolve. We can learn so much from this saying regarding our business and personal brands. The people we surround ourselves with will shape our future. This was true when we chose our friends in high school and college, and this same principle applies into adulthood when we build our teams. The wisdom we glean from this simple truth can help us shape our recruiting philosophy, shape our Company’s culture and fashion the customers we acquire. As leaders, we should understand that the brightest people in the world want to work and compete alongside other bright leaders.

It is important to remember that every hire over the course of time will develop into a flock. When you recruit bright, committed, out of the box thinkers into your business they will not only make your company successful, they will attract more like minded individuals who will want to join your team. When I am hiring, I look for resilient, tenacious and passionate individuals. While each of these potential hires will have a different set of specific skills and benefits they add to a team, I look for similar character traits that point toward their future success and their ability to add positive attributes and energy to our team. In addition to resiliency, tenacity and passion, I look for people who constantly live in a resource state. We all need to work with people that are living in a constant state of learning – or better yet – listening to other points of view. They are willing and searching for paths to alter their approach or course in order to improve outcomes.

We should desire to be around, recruit, work for and lead – etc… the types of people that challenge and motivate us. New ideas are often brought about by standing on the shoulders of the giants beside us, therefore shouldn’t we surround ourselves with giants that challenge our rigor and raise our personal bars? We need to lift together and continue to drive a higher level of capabilities and activities into our businesses and lives.