3. The initial sell conversation

3. The initial sell conversation

The initial sell conversation is your very first touchpoint with a candidate and is usually over coffee or call/video call. At Gem, we call this conversation the “initial sell conversation” because the primary goal is to “sell” your candidate. For that reason, our detailed guide to the initial sell conversation lives in the


We link to it and summarize it here because it probably makes sense to learn a little about selling and closing before jumping into nurturing passive talent or interviewing. You should probably also read the introduction to

and understanding motivations alongside the initial sell conversation.

Again, head to our detailed guide to the initial sell conversation, but here are some high-level best practices:

  • Make candidates comfortable by building a strong rapport.
  • Spend most of your time selling, especially for passive candidates.
  • Selling doesn’t mean “pitching” the whole time. Get to know what’s important to your candidate by asking questions, which is very similar to “discovery” in sales.
  • Qualify out of candidates where there isn’t a good mutual fit. In many cases, because your startup may not be the right fit for them.
  • For candidates you want to move forward with, make sure to suggest and lock in the next step.

Next Steps

Back ← Back to home here
Next Up → Read our in-depth guide on the initial sell conversation here → Skip ahead to nurturing passive talent here

Feedback? Suggestions? Ideas? Comment directly or email steve@gem.com