Office Hours: I’m a 3x founder and have 10+ years of experience working in tech recruiting with Fortune 500 companies and startups. I’m Neha Naik. AMA!Featured

Hi Elphas!

My name is Neha Naik and I’m the Founder and CEO at RecruitGyan, where we specialize in helping hyper-growth tech startups build and keep a first-rate team. I’ve also founded two other companies – a sleep consultant company and a data analytics company.

I have over 10 years of experience working with Fortune 500 companies and startups in full-cycle recruiting, specifically within the focus areas of people, process and technology. I’m also an official member of Forbes Business Council.

During my downtime, I enjoy running, binging Netflix shows, and spending time with my family.

Ask me anything about building first-rate teams, employee retention, navigating layoffs, preparing for a job interview, employer branding initiatives, being a 3x founder, juggling parenting and a career, sleep consultancy, or anything else!

Thanks so much for joining us @NehaNaik22!Elphas – please ask @NehaNaik22 your questions before Friday, September 15th. @NehaNaik22 may not have time to answer every questions, so emoji upvote your favorites 🔥👍🏾➕
Hello Neha ! Thanks for sharing your experiences with us. How do you tackle the work-life balance dilemma? As as serial founder, what do you wish you had known at the beginning of your entrepreneurial journey?
Hey there! Great questions :)Balancing work and life is indeed one of the most challenging aspects of being an entrepreneur, especially when juggling multiple ventures. Over the years, I've developed a few strategies that have been instrumental for me:1. Prioritize: Every morning or the night before, I list out the top three things I absolutely need to accomplish for the day. This keeps me focused on what’s critical. 2. Time Blocking: I allocate specific blocks of time for work, personal activities, and family. This ensures I'm fully present in whatever I'm doing, whether it's a business meeting or a family dinner.3. Delegation: Having a trusted team is vital. I've learned the importance of delegating tasks that others can handle so I can focus on high-priority items or strategic decisions.4. Set Boundaries: I try to have dedicated "no work" times, like during family meals or my running sessions. It's a chance for my brain to recharge and for me to connect with loved ones.5. Self-care: Whether it's indulging in a Netflix binge or going for a long run, taking time for myself helps me rejuvenate and return to work with fresh energy.Remember, balance doesn't always mean an equal distribution of time, but rather an equilibrium that ensures both your personal and professional life flourish, so think of it more like harmony vs. balanceLooking back, there are several things I wish I had known:1. Embrace Failure: Every venture won't be a success, and that's okay. Failures are invaluable lessons in disguise.2. Network Actively: Building strong relationships early on is more beneficial than one can imagine. You never know where your next partnership, client, or piece of advice will come from.3. Consistent Learning: The business landscape changes rapidly. Continuous learning and adaptability are key to staying relevant and innovative.4. Listen More: Whether it's feedback from customers, advice from mentors, or input from the team, listening can provide insights that might otherwise be missed.5. Celebrate Small Wins: The entrepreneurial journey can be tough, so celebrating even the small milestones can boost morale and maintain momentum.6. Maintain a Strong Support System: Having friends, family, or mentors to lean on during challenging times can make all the difference.Let me know if this makes sense if you have additional questions!
Thank you, Neha ! I definitely struggle with embracing failure the most... How do you spring back from a failure? And do you have any tips for not taking criticism personally? (with respect to your point about listening more)
Hi Neha! The tech recruiting world seems to be constantly shifting and evolving...what trends or changes do you anticipate in the field of full-cycle recruiting, and how should companies prepare for them?
Great question!! Absolutely, the tech recruiting landscape is dynamic and continually evolving. Here's my take on the trends and changes we can anticipate:1. Remote Work and Global Talent Pools: With the normalization of remote work, companies have access to a broader, global talent pool. This means recruiters will need to become adept at sourcing and evaluating candidates from different cultures, time zones, and backgrounds.2. Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI): Companies are putting more emphasis on DEI initiatives. We can anticipate that recruiters will need more comprehensive strategies and tools to ensure diverse hiring, going beyond just traditional methods.3. Emphasis on Employer Branding: As the competition for top talent intensifies, having a strong employer brand will be crucial. This means more focus on creating an attractive work culture, sharing success stories, and showcasing employee testimonials.4. Technological Integration: AI, machine learning, and predictive analytics will play a significant role in sourcing, screening, and engaging with potential candidates. Companies should invest in the latest recruiting technologies to stay competitive.5. Candidate Experience: Just as much as companies interview candidates, candidates are evaluating companies. A smooth, transparent, and respectful recruitment process can significantly influence a candidate's decision to join a company.6. Skills Over Pedigree: Given the pace of technological advancements, the emphasis on skills and adaptability will increase compared to traditional credentials. Recruiters will need tools and strategies to assess candidates based on skills and potential, rather than just their CV's credentials.7. Continuous Learning and Upskilling: As technologies evolve, so does the requirement for new skill sets. Companies will need to invest more in continuous learning programs to ensure their employees stay relevant.8. Flexible Working Models: Beyond remote work, there will be a rise in part-time, freelance, and gig roles. Full-cycle recruiting will have to incorporate strategies to attract, manage, and retain this kind of workforce.To prepare for these trends, companies should:- Invest in Training: Equip their recruiting teams with the skills and knowledge to navigate these changes. - Update Tools and Technology: Ensure they are using the latest and most effective recruitment platforms and technologies. - Revisit Company Policies: Modify or introduce policies that foster a diverse and inclusive work culture. - Strengthen Employer Branding: Work on their public image as an employer through social media, their website, and other channels.- Focus on talent retention as opposed to the hire, rehire trend!Remember, recruiting is not just about filling roles; it's about finding the right fit for the company's culture, needs, and future growth. Being proactive about these trends will position companies well in attracting and retaining the best talent.
I am so intrigued! What does it mean to run a sleep consultant company?
Just a guess: offering 1-1 support to help you sleep through the night (perhaps toddlers first but adults too?) I'd be so curious to learn more too and learn the approach!
Hey there! Yes, I work with families/kids and help them sleep through the night by instilling healthy boundaries and behaviors because I think sleep is not an option, its a biological necessity! :)
Hi Neha, thanks for offering your time and sharing your experience. My first question is: What do you believe are the key elements of a successful recruiting operations strategy for hyper-growth tech startups?Secondly, as someone with experience in full-cycle recruiting, what are some common mistakes that startups make in their hiring processes, and how can they avoid them?
This is an awesome question, thank you for asking!!! Here is the answer: 1. Alignment with Business Objectives: Understand the company's growth trajectory and the roles required to fuel that growth. 2. Scalable Systems and Tools: Adopt Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) and other tech platforms that can handle increased volume as the startup grows. 3. Diversity and Inclusion: Prioritize building a diverse team from the beginning, which can foster innovation and different perspectives. 4. Candidate Experience: Ensure a smooth, fast, and positive experience for candidates, from application to onboarding. 5. Data-Driven Decisions: Utilize metrics and analytics to identify bottlenecks, understand the success rate, and continually refine the recruiting process. Common Mistakes in Hiring Processes and How to Avoid Them:1. Undefined Job Descriptions: - Mistake: Vague or constantly changing job requirements. - Solution: Clearly define roles, responsibilities, and required skills before publishing a job opening. 2. Neglecting Cultural Fit: - Mistake: Hiring solely based on skills without considering the cultural alignment. - Solution: Incorporate cultural fit assessments in the interview process. 3. Not Selling the Vision: - Mistake: Not effectively communicating the startup's mission and potential to candidates. - Solution: Train recruiters and interviewers to passionately share the company's vision and future plans.4. Ignoring Feedback: - Mistake: Not gathering or acting on feedback from candidates or new hires. - Solution: Regularly collect feedback and continuously iterate on the hiring process.
Hi Neha! Thanks for sharing your time with us. I'm curious about your journey into recruitment/HR. How did you break into this industry? What do you think are qualities that make a great recruiter?
Hey there! Thanks for asking, I actually wanted to go to med school and while I really enjoyed the idea of being a doctor, I soon realized that it wasn't my jam (don't get me wrong, I have an immense amount of respect for doctors and all that they do). I then started working at an oil and gas company and realized that this recruiting thing was awesome and closed some major deals that year. I then was recruited for another Recruitment Process Outsourcing company where I helped close Manufacturing, Chemical Industry roles - but I soon realized that I wanted to do something on my own and earn exponentially without capped commission so that is when I decided to give in a 2 week notice and take 3 months off to cold call, cold email, hustle etc. and was able to land my first 5 clients in 4 weeks. I slowly then started adding a team so I could do the fulfillment. Today, I teach candidates to find roles, fill roles for clients and also teach aspiring entrepreneurs to start their own recruiting agencies!Here are some skills that I think make for a great, successful recruiter: empathy and emotional intelligence, Willing to grow the sales muscle, high sense of urgency, networking skills, attention to detail, strong communication skills.
Hi Neha! Thanks for your time :) Is the September surge a real thing? If so, what's the best way to prepare or look for this surge in opportunities as a job seeker?
September Surge is absolutely real and lasts through the end of November! The best way to prepare is by first updating your resume and LinkedIn. Once those are updated and optimized then you’ll want to start connecting and following companies that have open roles or even ones that may have roles in the future. Then start reaching out and liking posts on LinkedIn and other online platforms to showcase your expertise in your industry. Finally, start practicing your interviewing skills even if it’s just watching YouTube videos. We have a lot of resources on our YouTube channel for updating your resume and LinkedIn.
What are some best practices for onboarding and retention that you think are key?
Love this question! I talk about this all the time with my clients who worry about turnover:Onboarding Best Practices:1. Structured Onboarding Program: Have an onboarding process that spans from the first day to several months.2. First Day Experience: Ensure the new hire's workspace is ready and give them a warm welcome.3. Essential Trainings: Offer sessions on tools, processes, and company culture.4. Assign a Buddy/Mentor: Pairing new hires with an experienced employee can help with the transition.5. Regular Check-ins: Managers should meet with new hires often to address concerns and gather feedback.Retention Best Practices:1. Career Development: Offer growth potential through training, workshops, and advancement opportunities.2. Recognition and Rewards: Regularly acknowledge and reward achievements.3. Flexible Work Options: Consider remote work, flexible hours, or other work-life balance initiatives.4. Competitive Compensation: Ensure pay and benefits are in line with industry standards.5. Supportive Work Environment: Foster collaboration, inclusivity, and open communication.
Welcome to Elpha, Neha!What are your thoughts on, and what advise would you give, to someone looking to make a vertical move from one industry to another, for example, real estate into tech.Thanks,Roxy
Hi Roxy, Thank you for asking! My journey into recruitment took an unconventional turn. Initially on a medical path as a MedSchool student, I shifted gears, realizing the medical field wasn't the right fit. Seeking to stay within healthcare, I began as a Junior Recruiter. It became apparent that recruiting resonated with me, and I excelled at it. This led me to pivot towards the tech industry, starting with a Fortune 50 company.Regarding the qualities that, in my view, define a great recruiter, a human-centric approach tops the list. Placing individuals in roles based not only on their experience but also their motivation and cultural alignment with a company is key. This approach not only fills positions but significantly boosts retention rates. Additionally, a strong affinity for data is crucial to ensure recruiting efforts are effective and to pivot strategies as needed. Lastly, it's vital to maintain top-notch communication with both your hiring team and potential candidates, ensuring seamless collaboration and a positive candidate experience.
Hi Neha! My question is about how to manage your job search and personal brand when you have multiple areas of interest. I like to describe myself as a "multipotentialite" (rather than a "Jill of All Trades"), as I have significant professional experience in multiple arenas. I've primarily made money as a web developer for the past 20 years, but I also have two writing degrees, have written a book and many magazine articles, and co-host and produce a popular parenting podcast. I'm emerging back into the workforce from an extended maternity break, and I just don't know how to brand myself. I feel my different interests are confusing for potential employers, but I want to be open to both writing and development jobs. Any advice would be welcome! Thanks :)(Also, I'm a big fan of sleep training! Saved my sanity x2!)
Hey, what an awesome question!!! Hello!Firstly, congratulations on your multifaceted career and the diverse skill set you bring to the table. Being a "multipotentialite" is a strength, and your varied expertise can certainly be an asset if positioned correctly. Managing multiple businesses and responsibilities, I can empathize with the challenges of juggling diverse interests. Here's how I would suggest you approach your job search and personal brand:1. Unified Personal Branding: - Narrative: Weave your diverse experiences into a cohesive story. Perhaps your expertise in web development is complemented by your ability to understand and create compelling content, making you a holistic digital expert. - Elevator Pitch: Develop a concise, impactful statement that encapsulates who you are professionally and the unique value you bring.2. Customized Resumes: - Targeted Approach: If applying for a web development role, emphasize that experience on your resume, while your writing becomes a secondary, but still relevant, strength. - Versatility: Highlight how your diverse skills have been an advantage in past roles. For example, your writing abilities made you better at communicating complex tech concepts to non-tech stakeholders.3. Leverage Your Online Presence: - LinkedIn: Consider having a detailed LinkedIn profile showcasing all your achievements, from web development to writing. Use the summary section to tell your story. - Portfolio: If possible, create a portfolio website. Divide it into sections – web development projects, published writings, and podcast episodes. This gives potential employers a one-stop-shop to see everything you can offer.4. Networking: - Informational Interviews: Reach out to professionals in both fields, understanding current trends and where your combined skill sets might fit best. - Diverse Networking: Attend both tech and writing events or webinars. Being present in both ecosystems can open doors to roles that value your dual expertise.5. Positioning for New Roles: - Hybrid Roles: Look for roles that might benefit from both your technical and writing prowess, such as Technical Content Strategist, Developer Advocate, or Content Manager at a tech company. - Consulting or Freelancing: Given your diverse skills, consider roles that allow you to work on different projects simultaneously, catering to both your interests.6. Continual Learning: - Since you're returning from a maternity break, consider any refresher courses or certifications that might help you stay updated, especially in web development which evolves rapidly.7. Reframe "Jill of All Trades": - Present yourself as someone who masters multiple domains. Your varied skills mean you bring a richer perspective, can connect interdisciplinary dots, and are adaptable – all highly valuable in today's dynamic job market.8. Embrace Your Passion: - Your mention of being a fan of sleep training, given your podcasting background, means there might be potential there too! Consider roles or projects that allow you to blend your personal interests with professional skills.
Hi!I’m a first time founder, creating a B2C app and I’m having a lot of difficulty navigating the landscape. I was wondering - do you have any recommendations with spaces/events/groups I can join to connect with other founders and people in the start up landscape?Secondly, I’m trying to figure out my GTM strategy and pricing has been something I have been coming back to. My app is expected to offer a service that replaces the need to pay a human to do the same service. I was going to charge a monthly subscription fee of $15 to get started ( the human service is $2,400 to $7,500 a year) but I’m worried people would want to pay off the bat for a service they never used before. Also, how did you get your first customers?
Hi Melita! Congratulations on being a Founder - taking that first step is something that so many don’t do. In terms of spaces/events/groups, I recommend looking for Innovation/Startup Hubs, Accelerators, Incubators, and live events (for example search StartUp on Eventbrite) – depending on where you are located, you might be surprised to see how many options are available.In terms of a GTM strategy, the monthly subscription fee of $15 is a reasonable starting point, addressing the hesitation of paying upfront for an untried service is essential.To address this concern, you could consider offering a freemium model or a trial period where potential users can experience the service for free or at a significantly reduced cost for a limited time. This allows them to understand the value your app provides before committing to a subscription. I also think gathering feedback from a small group of early adopters can provide valuable insights into their willingness to pay and their preferences regarding payment structures, helping you tailor your pricing strategy to better suit your target audience.In terms of getting my first customers, I did a great deal of networking and cold calling, as well as leveraged my network.
Hello Neha, thank you for this opportunity!I am currently interviewing with a tech company for an executive role. I have had two interviews already, one with whom would be a peer if I got the job and one with the hiring manager. Another round is scheduled this week, and one of them is with the Chief HR Officer (CHRO). Can you share what kind of questions the CHRO may ask or what they are "screening" for that the hiring manager hasn't already asked?Thank you,CJS