The adventure travel agency Explora Project, founded in 2018 by Stanislas Gruau, joined since by his partner Alix Gauthier, should increase from 15 to 25 employees by September 2021, then to 40 employees in June 2022. Growth correlated with that of turnover, which could triple in 2021 to 3 million euros, and which is based on a logic: surround yourself with people passionate and trustworthy.
The recruitment challenge
” The beginnings of a start-up, this is where the project is the most risky, comments Stanislas Gruau. Many fall behind or stop because associates don’t get along or the employees aren’t the right ones. »Anxious to make the best choices, this fan of ultra races therefore preferred take your time to recruit good people. And to avoid any unpleasant surprises, he decided to turn to those around him. ” All my first recruitments – until I reached around 10 employees – were people recommended by friends and former colleagues and comrades of my business school, Edhec », He explains.
It does not matter that these candidates do not necessarily tick all the boxes on the skills-level job description. ” Anyway, the missions evolve very quickly as the company grows and as we recruit new people. And then, training is possible. The important thing is to be able to trust this first base of employees to keep moving forward », Continues Stanislas Gruau.
The entrepreneur also had to make sure to recruit people who were motivated by the project and passionate about it. ” Often, the first employees are seduced by a somewhat idealistic pitch from the founder, then end up losing interest and leaving. I wanted to avoid that and so I carried out the project with honesty, and insisted on its values. “
Retain its employees
The first employees witness the evolution of the company and are also forced to adapt. ” They must be aware that their position may change », Continues the head of Explora Project. Two early-stage employees who were not in tune with the rapid growth of the company – approximately 300% per year since its creation – thus preferred to leave the adventure.
Today, the recruitment process has changed. Three to four people take care of the first physical interview with the candidate preselected by the managers, then send their impressions to the managerial duo. One way to ensure that new recruits get along with the team already in place.