Should Startups Hire Based On Passion Or Experience?

Should Startups Hire Based On Passion Or Experience?



Would you hire your next employee based on passion or experience?. Business professionals, startup founders and business leaders shared their opinions on Quora. These are selected thoughts and opinions.

  1. Hire and promote first on the basis of integrity; second, motivation; third, capacity; fourth, understanding; fifth, knowledge; and last and least, experience. Dee Hock
  2. Passion has limits, and without the steady hand of experience passion will diminish overtime in many cases, leaving the enterprise to languish.  Michael R.H.Stewart-Social Media Strategy, Execution and Management – President, Jericho Technology, Inc. – 20 years online experience
  3. Experience without passion settles for commonplace solutions, ones without risk. Passion is the fuel that feeds the engine of innovation.-Michael R.H.Stewart
  4. It would really depend on the position and the role they need to fill. If I were hiring a CFO, experience matters, passion being secondary. Otherwise passion is extremely important to me.- David Ferguson- On startup #2
  5. I would put a candidate’s work ethic above passion and experience. I can mold a hard-working person to any role. If a person takes their work seriously, they learn quickly, and often develop their passion in the process.  Sol Irvine – Founder of The Daily Play and the Yuson & Irvine law firm.
  6. Eh, passion can be faked, experience cannot.- Carl Anthony Jr, Analyst
  7. If you have time to mentor, then definitely passion. If you need someone to stabilize the ship, then experience. Ashish Panjabi, Entrepreneur, Tech Enhthusiast
  8. Regardless of any role and stage of company, hire a person who is passionate about learning new things. – Abhishek Shivkumar, Works inside a Large company, but in a Startup environment
  9. I don’t think it depends on the role or position. You can gain and teach experience, but you cannot gain or teach passion. Nor can you buy passion. Either somebody is passionate about something or not.-Kai Gradert, Designer, Creator & Thinker
  10. Experience is never considered. And while I will use passion as a tiebreaker, a person’s ability to do the work and interact effectively with the team always takes priority. Doug Luce, Two successful (profitable) startups
  11. There is a good adage- intellect can be easily replicated, passion cannot. Darla Brown, communications director, UT Medical School at Houston
  12. It depends. If I am hiring a software developer, obviously I would hire experience over passion. But among the many software developers I would hire the person with passion to build and create. But generally I would always look out for the passion trait. Passion cannot be overemphasized. Business leaders have build great companies because the passion to see it succeed. Thomas Oppong

What is your opinion?

4 Comments

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  1. Kerry

    I think when you are starting out, I personally prefer to go for passion as well as the ability to learn fast. If you can find someone who is passionate you will be able to get them to adapt faster, work harder and care more about making your brand a success.

    We have hired a few people based on experience, but the reason it didn't end up working out was because they just didn't have the passion required to put in the effort needed. All the people with passion seem to have stuck around and actually enjoy the challenge of new things being thrown their way.

    Maybe it changes later on when you need more stability or you require leaders to grow the business. In the beginning we found we just needed doers.

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