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Ninjas, Rock Stars and Jedi Are Not the Employees You’re Looking For!

Adi Assaf

If you want to build the empire of your dreams, don’t hire Jedi, you need to hire pioneers.

If you want to build the empire of your dreams, don’t hire Jedi, you need to hire pioneers.

The ideal employees had captivated their employers’ minds since the dawn of the industrial age, and probably even before that.

If you were looking at classifieds a few decades ago, you’d probably find that creative, professional, honest and productive employees were in high demand.

But that changed with the rise of social media.

I’m sure that you noticed the ‘rock star recruitment posts’, the kind of posts and classifieds that demand ‘superhumans’ and wouldn’t settle for mere human employees, nope these won’t do.

There are a lot of problems with these kinds of classifieds.

First of all, we are all humans, trying to recruit ‘superhumans’ always ends up in attracting the wrong candidates.

Candidates who think they’re superhuman, usually underperform when confronted with complex tasks that require both motivation and teamwork. In addition, if they see something in the job description that is not a part of their skill set, their inner dialog will just dismiss it.

They will be drawn to your posts like moths to the flame!

They want to embody perfection, and your post demands perfection in the form of superhuman abilities, it will complicate your recruiting process and leave you with a small pool of overly confident, yet probably not that great candidates.

Sure, believing in oneself is great, and confident employees that know what they’re doing is a boon to any company, but take that to the extreme and you get the opposite of what you wanted to achieve, here are some examples of how it’s going to play out…

So you want to recruit ninjas, ha?

Who wouldn’t want a ninja working for them, they’re awesome, right?

They get the job done, they have a lot of tricks up their sleeves and they kick ass and take names on a regular basis.

Unfortunately, the ninja types won’t do for the long run, much like ninjas they’re good for small projects, sure, but they leave in their wake damage and they might even sabotage your work, it depends on their goals, which are never aligned with yours.

In addition, ninjas are really good at disappearing, smoke and all.

You can’t count on a ninja to share your values, or to stick around, and that’s why they’re the worst kind of employees.

Rock stars employees will rock your boat

Rock stars are excellent performers, they get cheers and love and spread it all around, they will make you43r232r company look good and so much more, or at least that’s what we are led to believe.

The minute they have to perform a difficult task, or when the likelihood that they won’t be the center of attention increases (something that rock star employees can’t deal with because they suffer from a plethora of mental problems, narcissism being one), they’re gone.

Rock stars are all about the show, a lot of talk but no cigar. If you want productivity of some sort, forget about it, they have an attention span of a butterfly.

You can’t count on rock stars because they are not team players, they require high maintenance and they’ll bail out the minute it stops to be about them.

Luke is right, it’s time for the Jedi to end

Jedi are stable, sure, they keep the peace, they are loyal, and they take care of what needs to be done.

Up until this point they sound like the ideal employees, right?

And indeed, Jedi employees can be the perfect, especially for companies that want to keep the status quo, but in high paced environments, not so much. They don’t think outside the box and they are not flexible when it comes to change.

Your ideal employee should be flexible, compassionate, tolerant and remarkable, that’s why instead of the above trio, try to focus on the following employees, they will fuel your company with the right juice and take you from pre-launch and onto the stars!

#1 The builders

To me a builder sounds way better than a ninja, builders will stay in your company and build it from the ground up, from zero to hero, call it whatever you’d like. They’ll put their backs into it and stick around to reap the rewards.

They are:

  • Not afraid of challenging work.
  • They are excellent team players.
  • They are willing to commit.
  • They are good planners.
  • And are extremely productive.

How do you identify them? Easy.

If you bump into a candidate that had built something they’re proud of, whether for a previous employer or in their free time, offer them a job!

#2 The visionaries

A visionary is no dreamer, don’t confuse the two.

They are vocal, demanding and at times it looks like they’re trying to grab everyone’s attention, but contrary to rock stars, they do that to get something amazing done.

They are:

  • Excellent planners.
  • They carry an arsenal of techniques and methods with them that allows them to realize their vision.
  • They strategize success, they don’t cross their fingers and hope for the best.
  • They are extremely creative.
  • And failure is just a minor setback in their grander vision of things.

They are here to make dreams come true.

How do you identify them? Easy.

If you bump into a candidate that headed something amazing in its earliest stages, that’s your candidate. Don’t confuse visionaries with builders. Contrary to builders they are always head figures in amazing projects.

#3 The pioneers

Like the courageous frontier men and women of old, the pioneers are here to explore and conquer uncharted grounds. They are hands-on like nothing you’ve seen and they’re excellent managers.

In addition, they are:

  • Extremely productive.
  • They got your back, you know you can count on them and they are team players.
  • Not afraid to explore or use unorthodox methods to do something better.
  • They are fast learners and are unafraid of new experiences.
  • And they’re here to make the next breakthrough happen!

If you want to build the empire of your dreams, don’t hire Jedi, you need to hire pioneers.

How do you identify them? Easy.

They are not afraid of change, they are change incarnated. They are the first to try new things, and when you review their resume, you’ll find things that might have looked funny at the time, but over the years had transformed into a phenomenon.