Pixar obviously has an enormous stable of talent. But how does the company find the people they hire? Here’s a video explaining the process. Randy Nelson is dean of Pixar University, the company’s recruiting and training arm. As he explains, Pixar’s HR process overturns several widespread assumptions.
Mostly, it’s about hiring ultra-nerds with good communication skills. To wit: You want people who have become exceptional at a tiny discipline, no matter how obscure or dorky, since it’s that compulsion to truly master something that predicts how they’ll handle a new task. (Wannabe Pixar employees: Don’t bury your unicycle or juggling skills on your resume.) Another idea is looking for people who have failed and overcome—as Nelson puts it, “The core skill of innovators is error recovery not failure avoidance,” which is key if you’re asking someone to solve a never-before-solved problem. But perhaps the squishiest trait is the ability to make others around you better, through communication and camaraderie.