Robust Software

Tales of a code samurai

Hiring for the Future

When hiring people, beyond the basic competency requirement of the role, I look for an alignment in future goals. This is why the question of “where do you see yourself in N years time?” is so ubiquitous.

Any existing competencies for the role on offer are only a single part of the hiring story. Anyone who is hiring should have in mind what role they would like that person to grow in to. Similarly, the candidate should be capable of doing the job as advertised but have an idea of what they want to do beyond it.

The reasons for this are two-fold: motivation and retention. Hiring is a costly exercise even if you can avoid using recruiters. There’s still a significant amount of time spent on the process of hiring the right people. If the future goals of the individual don’t align with the envisaged path of progression by the company, at some point there may be a conflict in 2-3 years time.

However, if they do align it should produce a relationship that is mutually beneficial. The individual will achieve the self-actualisation they are looking for and the company will be able to coach the individual into the role they foresaw a need for at the point of hiring. The individual should also find more fulfilment in their starting role as the path of progression, and how the company will support their journey down that path, should be clear to both parties. You’ll never avoid busywork, but it is a lot more palatable when you don’t feel like you’re stagnating.

Whilst it is most poignant when hiring, there’s no reason you can’t retrofit it into a company where it doesn’t exist. It just may be that it’s not possible to make everyone happy as you can only have so many team leads, managers, etc. However, it’s much better to be aware of who is and isn’t happy with their current path of progression than to be ignorant of it.

I’ve been thinking about topics such as this because as CTO of Cronofy I’ll be looking to hire soon. If you are interested in having a chat, please email me at