Looking for Team Happiness? R+R+R… and Cupcakes

The creative team at AMC revealed why they work so well together in a recent post. As it turned out, the magic formula for teamwork required more than strange grapes, oddly flavored potato chips, cupcakes, and the rest of the carbs we cram onto a file cabinet that’s conveniently buffet height.

Their take on things got me thinking about how we reached our current relatively happy place and whether it was possible to convey that briefly. The answer came quickly:  R+R+R = Happy Team.

Luckily, this isn’t Twitter, so I can explain the three Rs of a happy and engaged team. Perhaps you can apply them to your team.


If you’re not over-the-moon excited about a candidate, don’t hire that person.

Remember that sentence, and you’ll be more successful in hiring great candidates.

It sounds overly simple—until you try it. Following this principle involves a lot more discipline than you would think.

A small lingering doubt? Something the candidate said that just didn’t feel quite right? When you identify an issue but like a lot of things about the candidate, it’s tempting to take a chance that you can fix the problem, right?

Wrong. Run away from the candidate as fast as you can.

Why don’t we run when we know we should? The recruiting process can be downright draining. You’ve posted the job, worked your network, conducted rounds of interviews, and come up empty. During the second—or even third—try, you might be tempted to lower your standards a bit.

Don’t. Don’t give in. If you give in now, you’ll pay for it later. Worse, that new problem employee can cause headaches for your entire team.

Bonus recruiting tips:

  • Approach candidates instead of waiting for them to apply. You can reach out to the best matches by conducting a LinkedIn search if you have a recruiter subscription
  • Candidates’ diligence matters—gold stars for the engaged note taker and thank-you note writer.
  • Give another gold star for those who know how to have a conversation, not just a Q&A session
  • During the interview, ask for specific examples of the behavior or experience you’re seeking.
  • Another reason to give gold stars: candidates who ask a lot of questions and still have one left when you wind up the interview by asking if they have any questions.
  • Don’t be afraid to test for a specific skill the role requires.
  • Candidates who have done their homework—on the company, the job, or even you—get more gold stars.

Read more from Clay Baznik here.

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