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Darrian Mikell


Black to Business


Monique Marshall


October 28, 2021


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How To Recruit & Hire The Right People For Your Business w/ Darrian Mikell

In this episode of “Black to Business,” Darrian Mikell speaks with host Monique Marshall. As Co-Founder and CEO of Qualifi, he explains how his SaaS platform helps recruiting teams hire great candidates faster than ever before through his innovative and genius ways of recruitment. From the company’s roots and the company’s progress and processes, Mikell highlights how everything that happens inside a company ultimately comes down to the people they hire. 


In this episode, you will learn:

  • Tips for recruiting and hiring for your business as it grows 
  • Knowing when’s the best time to hire for your business 
  • How to land and hire the best candidates for your business 
  • How to create an onboarding process and prepare for a new hire 
  • Ways to outsource your hiring process 


Good Question & Answer 1:

Monique Marshall: Wow, that is an amazing story and amazing platform. I’m so excited to talk more about it. But I also want to talk about, you know, for those who are listening, they’re in their startup journey. And I think that you would be the perfect person to start talking about your startup journey and just building a startup. So I want to talk about, for you, what do you feel that is? What is a startup and talk about the culture and environment? That’s different than, say, a bigger corporation versus a startup?

Darrian Mikell: Yeah, that’s a good question. Um, this is tough to pinpoint exactly what a startup is, I think it’s something that, for us, it started with an idea, right? It’s an idea of innovation, something new in the market, or expanding on a concept in the market. And with the ideas of moving really fast to prove and validate that idea and expand it to its greatest scale as fast as possible. So I think a lot of startups, or a lot of emphasis around startup world, startup life is going from small to big, really fast. And that typically is around getting a proof of concept, validating an idea, and doing your best work in order to, again, expand that concept to more of the marketplace. And so that’s what a lot of our work is about, is trying to move as fast as possible to prove what we do is valuable, and get that in the hands of as many people as possible to continue that cycle of, hey, we have this idea. Let’s prove it out. Let’s get it to more people, let’s have been validated as having them, give us feedback, correct, iterate, and relaunch it out to them, relaunch it to more people and continue to kind of push that snowball as fast as we can. And so, I don’t know if that’s a great answer to that question. But I think it differs from you know, what might be other sorts of businesses like large corporations, or even other small businesses where the emphasis isn’t really on fast growth or fast validation. It’s more about sustaining and building something that’s centered around profitability. Startups are more geared around that speed, that speed element for sure.


Good Question & Answer 2:

Monique Marshall: Well, speaking of working well together so one, I’m sure there are people who are listening who want to go into you know, partnerships or not do it alone. And how has it been working one with a family member, but then two working with a team of, you know, just a team in general, how do you balance your relationship? And maybe like, who does what? Figuring out who’s best at what? So talk a little bit about that.

Darrian Mikell: Yeah, that’s an important, important conversation. Because in the nature of startups, roles shift and change over time, like we’ve, you know, even to this day, still have conversations about where we’re going to be a best fit. We’re hiring folks on our team right now. And so effectively, some of the things that we used to own someone else is gonna own soon. So it means that we get to shift into other aspects of the business is trying to take on things. So just always having a conversation and openness to be in alignment with each other. And also understand that, hey, we’re where do I want to be in this company? Where’s my skill set best aligned for what we need in this company. So that’s, that’s, that’s one thing is just keeping an open dialogue, you know, throughout every phase of the business, especially as founders, we need to, we need to stay in alignment, because it’s going to affect the rest of the team, from a management standpoint, and just kind of an overall team dynamics and morale standpoint as well. So that that openness and that dialogue is necessary. And then just in general, as we build our team, like, what we try to be is people first, as opposed to just focusing solely on the work understanding that work is an important part of your overall life. But it’s only one aspect of your life. And so caring about the person first is really, really important to us. But yeah, happy to dig in there more. I don’t know if I answered your question there. Fully. But yeah,


Additional topics discussed:

  • Tips for Raising Money 
  • How smaller companies can work with bigger companies 
  • How to manage a small team 


Host / Podcast Bio: 

Black to Business is a community that focuses on bringing the highest quality of resources and connections to entrepreneurs of African descent. It was created to bring economic prosperity to the Black community through business creation. They provide Black service-based businesses with relatable business resources in a centralized location. This ultimately fosters economic growth and positions, Black business owners, as competitors in the global market. Their mission is to assist entrepreneurs in taking actionable steps to scale their businesses and meet the needs of their customers. 


Guest Bio:

Darrian Mikell is the Co-Founder and CEO of Qualifi, a SaaS platform that powers the fastest phone interview experience in the world and helps recruiting teams hire great candidates faster than ever before. He graduated from Indiana Wesleyan University in 2013 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Entrepreneurship and Finance. Darrian was a 2-sport athlete in both Basketball and Track & Field and was a national champion in the Long Jump. He is based in the Indianapolis area and is a dedicated husband and father of 3.


Resources and links mentioned in the show:

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