Recruiting for Teal


Teal, for many of us, holds the promise of a dream world.  Some of us are ready to jump in, building or joining a Teal company. There is just one problem.  We can’t build a Teal company without Teal competent people.

When selecting founding members and associates, finding Teal-inspired people is only the first step.  It is necessary to identify the following four additional qualities.


Self-awareness is the beginning of all wisdom.  If everyone, especially people with authorities, has self-awareness, then most of the problems on this planet would magically disappear.  Without self-awareness, going through life is like driving a car without knowing where to go, how to read the gauges and how to use the break or the clutch.

The autonomy offered in Teal organizations requires us to be the drivers of our own lives.  This means we need to know what we want, what we can offer, what our strengths and limitations are.  We need to know our thought patterns and behavioural patterns and identify which serves us and which doesn’t.  We need to know how to manage and express ourselves, and how to collaborate with others.  Without self-awareness, self-management is merely an abstract concept.  Yet, to most people, self-awareness doesn’t come naturally.


Consciousness is the Awareness of the Universe we live in.  Our level of consciousness or worldview moves through stages as we mature spiritually (see How to Identify Teal Leaders).  Teal, in Laloux’s book, refers to a level of consciousness more mature than what currently dominates our society, which is mainly Orange (Achiever) or Amber (Expert).

If we want to build a Teal company, at the minimum, we should be aware of our own level of consciousness (can be easily identified with a test).  Without this awareness, we could talk about creating Teal culture all we want, but our thoughts and approaches come from a worldview other than Teal.  This, based on my observation, has been a huge blind spot for many Teal enthusiasts, especially those who provide services to help other companies become Teal.

Do we need everyone working in a Teal inspired organization to already function from Teal worldview? No.  Every organization requires diverse talents and expertise.  These talents and expertise reside on different levels of consciousness.  All of these individuals can contribute and greatly benefit from working in a Teal environment.  But the CEO and the founding members should have as close to Teal worldview as possible.  If not, at least at the same level, wherever it is.  Otherwise, key decision-making can be a battle of different worldviews (more on this in another article).


This is the emotional mastery, people skills and general attitude about life.  Are we adaptable? Can we take risks? Can we fail and remain resilient? Can we take responsibilities? Can we respect, empathize with and understand those who are different? In essence, within a Teal environment, every single person is a self-motivated entrepreneur, capable of making her own decisions and managing her own projects.  At the same time, she is competent in collaborating with others as an equal to achieve something greater than herself.


These are the professional capabilities already valued in traditional recruiting.  Whether it is a web developer, a teacher or a project manager, the question is, can this person deliver? While Teal companies make a great emphasis on people development, they are entities with the objective of building a successful business. Competent people who can plug in and contribute will be in high demand.

In a true Teal world, there will be no people managers, only individual contributors. We all need two types of capabilities. First, the expertise in certain subjects or skills which people are willing to pay for.  Second, the ability to learn fast.  So we can take advantage of the dynamic Teal environment and grab new opportunities to expand ourselves and to make contributions.

There is a caveat.  The skills and expertise we developed in traditional organizations are not always transferable.  Not to mention the absence of passion while doing our old jobs.  This, to some extent, requires many of us to reinvent ourselves, based on a holistic view of who we are and what we want out of life.  The good news is that version 2.0 will take us closer to our true potential.


Building a successful Teal company is a long journey.  Where we begin and where we end are less important than the fact that we start.  It is helpful to know that building a Teal company requires competence in more dimensions than that in building traditional companies.  If one can start with the right people, the journey gets so much easier.

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