W e don’t actively ‘recruit’, instead we have “conversations” with people who are aligned to our way of thinking and working. People with a deep appreciation or understanding of what we are trying to achieve, and fresh ideas on how we can help our customers grow.
How we engage people
We recognise that business agility is a growing field, so people with full end-to-end experience are thin on the ground …or may not even exist at all. But we are seasoned operators, so have a pretty good idea of “who’s” out there. In all likelihood, if you are already doing GREAT stuff …we probably already know about it, and may contact you.
If you haven’t been contacted, this may just mean we have not crossed paths yet …so if you think you fit what we are looking for, and the collective fits you, please make contact.
Who gets ‘in’
There are two main types of people we have been speaking with:
- Those coming from the IT field directly. Senior coaches and trainers of capital ‘A’ Agile practices. Problem is, many coming from Dev/Ops environments have a limited ability to have the agility conversation outside of a technology audience. We are looking for people who understand and can talk with and to the business.
- The second stream consists of people who are using lean and systems-thinking principles outside of IT. Especially in areas like HR and Finance, or more generally in management or change. In many cases, these people do not have active experience in agile but have an innate understanding of the principles involved, and a strong desire to influence change.
Most people we speak to are leaders in their respective areas and running their own businesses. Many have found they’ve hit the ceiling in what their practice can achieve …and recognise that being part of something bigger will help them grow both professionally and personally.
Others are employees, often working as senior consultants for agencies. They are looking to grow their career, but don’t have the capacity (or perhaps inclination) to work fully on their own, so are looking for a hybrid agency to operate within.
Regardless of your history, a main aim of our collective is to support the ongoing development of our people. To actively encourage members to develop and maintain their thought-leader profile and brand. We do not see this as a conflict.
However, in saying this, another aim (or a kpi of the collective) is that members also understand the benefit of actively working to build the collective, and are equally committed in developing its brand. So, some balance of priorities may be necessary.
Our on boarding process.
If we haven’t worked with you before, then the first step starts with you. Make sure you read and fully understand 1) our DNA which is at the heart of how we operate and 2) what we are trying to achieve (you can get this from the website). For many people, it’s fairly obvious that our model won’t work, and little time is wasted. It should only take about 15min to work this out.
The next step starts as a conversation, usually with a founding member, (who acts as a puller, similar to the bun holder in our bun protocol.) If this goes well, we will invite, or ask your permission …to “continue the conversation”. This is code for: it looks like we have good alignment.
We don’t like to use the word trial but it’s kinda a trial, in that you get a better sense of how we work and what’s expected of you, …and we get a better sense of how you operate and the value you are bring. All going well, this conversation would include us giving you access to behind the scenes activity like: trello boards and our regular zoom meeting. This way we are all comfortable with where things are going.
The formal process follows our democratic principles
- Someone at the Collective is willing to be a “puller” for the candidate. That’s our internal term for the person “pulling” an initiative and making sure things move forward, and that the candidate is well-treated. Similar to the bun holder in our bun protocol.
- At least one us has worked with the candidate before or undergone “the conversation”. We want people to say “Hey, she’s awesome! We’d be IDIOTS not to let her join!”
- No one has vetoed the candidate.
If accepted …Welcome! You’ll need to sign our team contract, and create your own personal company (if you don’t already have one). Formally you’ll be employed by your company, not ‘the collective’. We’ll help you get started.
We will also go for dinner at a nice restaurant, setup your email account and all that jazz, like most other companies. And we’ll proudly display you on our site of course!
Other things that we value and we may use to help determine who to accept and reject (but don’t always require):
- The candidate complements us somehow, for example with new skills or perspectives that we lack. He/she will make us feel like newbies in some area!
- The candidate has lots of energy and ideas, and won’t be shy to challenge the status quo.
- The candidate is well-known and has a strong reputation in the industry.
- Shares our values. (well this one is more of a requirement.. but it’s more of a springboard for discussion, and not an easy black and white answer)
What kind of people don’t fit at our model?
People who need stability don’t fit. You won’t have stable working hours and a fixed desk. You won’t even get a fixed salary – in fact, it’s the other way around – you pay a fee (but keep most of what you earn). See the economic model. So when you don’t have a client, you bleed money every month! On the other hand, when you do have a client, you earn more than what any company would pay you in salary. So it’s up to you to buffer cash and manage risk.
What kind of people do fit here?
Most people who end up at the Collective were previously independent consultants (or were heading in that direction). Typical personality traits:
- Self-confident – they know that they are highly skilled and in high demand.
- Adventurous – a few months without an assignment isn’t the end of the world, it’s an opportunity to play around and learn new stuff!
- Social – they like to maintain a strong network and collaborate with people. Some of us are introverts, but still kind of social)
- Curious – want to learn new things, every day. Love geeking out better ways of doing things, or new techniques and technologies, processes, etc.
- Generous – like to share what they learn, not primarily for profit but because it’s fun and rewarding in itself.
- Responsible – they’re used to taking responsibility for their own goals and actions, and don’t wait for others to tell them what to do or solve their problems.