Strong Suit Podcast

Strong Suit is the playbook for recruiting Rockstars. You'll learn how to hire twice as fast. With half the mistakes. No more bad hires. ... Ready! Aim! Hire!
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Now displaying: September, 2017
Sep 28, 2017

There’s nothing I love better than a good juicy entrepreneur story. Creating a new business, born out of personal need & frustration.

And if it helps us recruit rockstars, all the better.

Josh Tolan is CEO of Sparkhire, which he founded 7 years ago. It’s now the fastest-growing video interviewing company in the world, with over 3,000 corporate clients.

Why video interviewing? Josh was with a 5-person firm in hypergrowth mode. They needed to hire 150 people in 12 months. And the only way to get it done swiftly was by using video for the initial candidate screen.

So, Sparkhire was born.

In this 20-minute interview, Josh reveals the pros & cons of video interviewing. When to use it, when to skip it, the best practices, and most importantly, how it can shave weeks of your current hiring cycle time.

If you’re going to recruit folks during Q4 this year - or if you just love a great startup story - you can’t afford to miss this episode.

Sep 26, 2017

I’m in search of ways to make recruiting more accurate.

And I’ve tracked down one of the most intriguing thought-leaders, Dr. Frida Polli. (She’s certainly one of the most qualified.)

After graduating from Dartmouth, Frida earned her PhD, then an MBA at Harvard Business School. She then became Doctoral Research Fellow at Massachusetts General Hospital… then Neuropsychology Intern at Harvard Medical School… then Postdoctoral Fellow at MIT in their infamous Brain & Cognitive Sciences Department.


Frida decided to use this deep expertise to help employers make better hires. She created Pymetrics to apply cognitive neuroscience to recruiting. Bottom line: she and her team use games & puzzles to identify better hires.

In this 20-minute interview, Frida reveals what she’s learned, what works & what doesn’t, and how using data will bolster your recruiting batting average.

Sep 22, 2017

I just don’t get it. 

Every week, I meet with growth company executives. And I ask to see their Talent Strategy. All I get is blank stares.

How can you possibly expect to grow — and have the talent to fuel that growth — without a gameplan around people.

So, I went out to find an expert on this topic. And I landed a whale!

Bertrand Dussert is VP of HCM (human capital management) Transformation for Oracle. In this role, he serves as HR transformation & executive advisor to some of Oracle’s largest clients. Prior to Oracle, Bertrand was the global leader for HR shared services, recruitment operations, and workforce planning for American Express.

In this 20-minute discussion, Bertrand and I talk about the importance of developing a talent strategy that maps to your business strategy. What does it consist of, how to execute it, and why so many executives miss the boat. 

Don’t be one of them.


Sep 19, 2017

If you’re like most managers, you have a 1:1 meeting with each of your staff members each week. You probably have one with your boss, too -- or your Board.

And you probably dread them.

So, let’s change that. I tracked down the foremost expert on getting the most out of 1:1’s.

Jonathan Raymond is head of Refound, the firm devoted to helping individual contributors make the leap to world-class people managers. Prior, he was CEO of EMyth, the legendary entrepreneur coaching company.

He’s also the author of the book Good Authority: How to Become the Leader Your Team is Waiting For.

Jonathan has studied and tested more on 1:1’s than anyone I’ve met. In this 20-minute interview, he reveals why they stink, how to change that, how to structure them, what to expect, how often, where…the whole enchilada. You can’t afford to miss this episode.

Sep 14, 2017

Unless you live under a rock, you know that Amazon has gone from selling its 1st book in 1995 to $150B in annual revenues. It’s simply breathtaking.

It’s also scary. If you’re not competing with Amazon, I’ll bet dollars to donuts that you soon will be.

In this very special 150th episode, I tracked down one of the world’s foremost experts on Amazon, John Rossman. As an early Amazon employee (he launched the Amazon Marketplace business), John studied the business inside & out.

He went on to write “The Amazon Way: 14 Leadership Principles of the World’s Most Disruptive Company.” I’ve read this book three times, because it explores Amazon thru the lens of talent.

Turns out, Amazon’s secret isn’t its technology or warehouses or operational excellence or Whole Foods acquisition. It’s none of that, yet all of that. It’s a revolutionary approach to recruiting & leading talent. 

John is Managing Director at Alvarez & Marsal, the prestigious turnaround and growth consulting firm

So, how does Jeff Bezos do it? Invest 20 minutes with John & me, and you’ll find out.

Sep 12, 2017

Regular listeners know that I’m on a mission to find ways to better predict how a candidate will actually do on the job.

Today’s guest has built a company that shares this mission.

Kristin Hamilton is CEO of Koru, based in Seattle. Following a successful career at Microsoft, she turned her focus to finding the crucial predictors.

And she’s identified the 7 things we must look for when vetting candidates.

Stop focusing on things that aren’t predictive. Which college, GPA, firm handshake, industry experience? Nope.

In this 20-minute episode, Kristin reveals how she cracked the code and how to ask the right questions so that you can assess candidates more accurately.

If you’d like to hire more accurately and avoid bad hires, you can’t afford to miss this episode.

Sep 7, 2017

I’ve got something really special for you today.

Regular listeners know that Strong Suit Podcast focuses on the “people part” of your business. Hiring, Firing, the whole enchilada.

But today is a packed episode just about You. You as an individual, as an executive, as a future CEO perhaps.

In this rare episode, I flipped things upside-down by enlisting one of the nation’s foremost experts on career management for executives.

Kevin Kermes is Founder and Partner at Career Attraction, based in sunny St. Petersburg. Forbes ranks it as one of the top career websites.

Most career and job advice is just plain wrong. You’d be floored by what I see from some candidates. What I like about Kevin is that he’s super-practical. He provides unconventional career advice to high-performing professionals.

Next episode, we’ll get back to building your company.  But today, Invest 20 minutes with us to advance your career.

Sep 5, 2017

By now, you know that seeking diversity - of all types - in your organization isn’t just the right thing.

It’s also the smart thing. Your organization should be a reflection of the increasingly diverse makeup of your customer base.

But how to do it?

Thankfully, I just landed an expert on the topic. Anise Wiley-Little was named Chief Human Capital & Diversity Officer of the Kellogg School of Management in 2014. This followed a 27-year career at  Allstate Insurance, most recently as Chief Diversity Officer.

She’s also author of “Profitable Diversity.”

In this 20-minute interview, Anise reveals the best practices for how to increase the diversity of your workforce, and the big mistakes to avoid along the way. Believe me, you can really screw this one up - so you don’t want to miss this episode.