How to attract top talent and how to hold a winning pitch

General Assembly arrived in Australia with a bang this week, with each of its opening classes packed out in Sydney.


The organisation uses industry experts and entrepreneurs to provide practical hands-on advice to start-up businesses.


It has set up shop in Australia following a successful period in the US and has partnered with StartupSmart.


The two first classes were on the topics of recruiting and retaining top talent and how to conduct a winning pitch, respectively.


We have picked out the key points from each of the classes and will be doing so each following week.


There’s a range of upcoming General Assembly classes in the coming weeks, on everything from generating media coverage to financial modelling. To find out more, click here



Recruiting and retaining top talent


Paul Slezak, head of community and client services at Recruit Loop, who ran the General Assembly class on attracting and keeping top talent, said: “One of the most overused phrases in business today is that ‘our people are our greatest asset.’”


“However when it comes to start-ups in particular, staffing is often the first area to suffer.”


Slezak recommends taking the following steps for the HR process:


Job description

  • Have you thought about a job description?
  • Should you use an external recruiter?
  • What do you need to look for in a recruiter?
  • Should you do it yourself?
  • Do you have time to do it yourself?
  • What do you look for in a CV?
  • How do you really distinguish between a candidate’s skills and competencies?
  • The job title must accurately reflect what they will be doing in the role.
  • Clearly define reporting lines and who they will be working with.
  • Defining duties and responsibilities vs skills and attributes.

Getting the right response to your job ad

  • Exactly who is your target audience?
  • Where are they now?
  • What steps are they taking to look for a new role?
  • You need to speak directly to them.

How to frame your job ad

  • Include key benefits (usually in three bullet points).
  • A brief business profile.
  • A summary of the role itself.
  • A profile of your ideal candidate.
  • Any rewards or incentives.
  • Your contact details.
  • A disclaimer.


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