Attracting the Right Talent Requires the Right Story

The-Right-Talent-the Right-Story

A recent article in Forbes Magazine by HYPR’s CEO Bojan Simic discussed the cybersecurity skills gap and how practitioners and executives can address the technical workforce shortages. While that article highlighted why and how companies should look beyond current job experience, this post looks holistically at how to attract talented people. It highlights what we do at HYPR to attract and retain our talented team members from a more personal approach.

Seven years ago I met our (now) CEO for the first time. Back then, HYPR resembled an aspiring rock band. It had all the elements needed for success, and a sound that was different yet relatable to all who heard it. Throughout my career, I’ve either been recruiting for or selling enterprise software, mostly within the Information Security industry. I’ve been involved with launching some great technology, and have met some extraordinary people that I now call friends. However, little did I know that initial meeting with Bojan would eventually land me here at HYPR, working with some of the best people I’ve ever known.  

Come for the Tech, Stay for the Team

One of the major reasons I was drawn to HYPR was, of course, the innovative technology. The sheer economic advantage of our approach makes it an obvious choice for anyone who logs into a computer, web or mobile application. We’ve found a way to easily and completely get rid of passwords and finally fix the way the world logs in — and HYPR delivers. Beyond the technology though, I quickly discovered that HYPR was so much more than a tech company. 

Within my first days, I realized HYPR embodies dedication to a level I had never experienced. Dedication to what we build, dedication to our customers, dedication to each other, to having fun, to being transparent, to being empathetic, to doing it over and over again. It’s not just Engineering or Sales, or Marketing or Operations for that matter. It’s each and every person within each and every team. Yes there are challenges, but people go above and beyond to meet them together. This matters. It also raises a question — why and how do some companies go above and beyond and others don’t or can’t?

Telling the Story

Understanding that HYPR was building more than a great product, I quickly reconnected with some exceptional people I had worked with previously to share that story. Within a short time after introducing them to others here at HYPR, they themselves became part of the HYPR team. Since then, I’ve received many referrals from our other team members and watched us grow. Our VP of Software Engineering, one of the most talented software engineers you could imagine, one of our top sales engineers, amazing Product Managers and so many more. Everyone joined because of a story which started years ago that they wanted to become a part of creating. 

Soon, I started sharing our story with others and they in turn shared theirs with us. As we got to know each other, our company continued to grow. Since I’ve been here, I’ve seen HYPR triple its workforce, expand diversity, start a focused college recruiting effort, become SOC 2 Type 2 Certified and partner with companies like Microsoft to develop better integrations that will benefit millions. I’ve been involved in hiring my own boss, and have seen several team members become parents for the first time, including our CEO.  

Attracting People Is About Listening

It’s an evolving story really, one to which our leadership, along with everyone here at HYPR, needs to continue to write if we’re to succeed. Attracting talented people is really only about two things. Sharing our story with them, and listening to them share theirs with us. Attracting people is not about ‘qualifying’ them for any particular function. It’s about understanding someone’s story first, and then eventually learning what they can do in terms of expanding our story as a whole. Attracting people and qualifying them for certain functions are two separate and different things. 

“Wearing multiple hats” within a startup is a cliche statement, yet it’s very true. Since I’ve been here, I’ve been tasked with growing our entire team by attracting and finding talented people who want to become a part of our story. I’ve been learning to handle support calls for incidents, was involved in the above-mentioned SOC 2 audits, helped support our customer success team, and have shared our story with prospective future customers who can benefit from our solution. I’ve listened to peers and managers alike, looking to build a continued story of success. I’ve seen one thing that resounds consistently, whether in cybersecurity or any other industry — that attracting the right people requires an organization to get involved and listen. It’s about hiring people who do the same, and It’s about carving out a path for their success. People may listen and be initially attracted to the technology. They wind up making a move for the people and the team. As to the reasons they stay, it’s certainly for the people, but there’s more. It’s about how an organization helps someone write their personal story — but that’s for another post.

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