Episode 81: How to Hire with Nathan Chan and Foundr Magazine

Who is Nathan Chan and the key takeaways in this episode?

Nathan Chan launched Foundr magazine two and a half years ago, while still working a full-time job and knowing little about the publishing industry or mobile apps. He has come a long way since then and has plenty to share. We can all learn something from Nathan’s journey, no matter what our own standing in life may be.

Listen to this entertaining and instructive interview and discover:

  • How Nathan came up with the idea for his magazine
  • How company culture helped to accelerate his business
  • Nathan’s favorite tip for building a culture
  • And much, much more

The Questions

How did you come up with the idea for your company?

Answer:I wish I could tell you I was super strategic about it all. So many people have said to me that it’s such a good idea or that it’s really smart what I do for the magazine. They say, “It’s such a noisy space and you really stood out in front of hard-to-reach entrepreneurs and business people. You’ve positioned yourself well.” Or they say, “That Nathan Chan guy is really smart.” You know what, John? It was nothing like something falling from the sky so that I knew exactly what I was going to do. I just wanted to launch and create something. It just kind of happened and I just fell into it. When I started I didn’t even know it would work. I said I’d give it a good hard crack for 12 months and I treated it as a passion project. I didn’t treat it like this is going to be a big company.

Could you share with us a story about how your company’s culture helped accelerate your business?

Answer: We usually base ourselves out of a co-working space. We just work from wherever. I’m actually purchasing an office […] within the co-working space. We’re going to deck it out and have our values there. It’s going to be the Founder home base. I’m really looking forward to having a place that we can call home even though we’re all situated around the world. A big part of our culture is that we’re here to help people however we can and to equip entrepreneurs with whatever we can. Having that mindset of just asking people how we can help means that everything we do is around helping. We try to be extremely giving and that seeps through into our work. […] That’s been very powerful for us.

Is there a tip you could share with our listeners who are entrepreneurs who are starting their businesses, building great cultures and hiring new staff?

Answer:I like the Tony Shea approach where you only hire people that you could have a beer with and hang out with. I think that’s a big one. You hire based on attitude and not skill. Hiring is really tough because it’s really hard to find good-quality people. It’s not easy and it’s definitely an art that you have to keep refining. Can you be a master at it? I’m not sure, but we try to hire people who have a great attitude.

Culture According to Nathan Chan:

It’s the way a company lives and breathes their values and what they believe in.

Book Recommendations:

  • Influence by Robert Cialdini

Go To Quote for Inspiration

What Nathan Chan Wants His Company to BE:

  • BE Helpful
  • BE Valuable
  • BE Shipping

Links and Resources Mentioned in this Interview:

Where to Find Nathan Chan:

  • Take a look at the Foundr website

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