"Hiring is Hard". Repeat with me. "HIRING IS HARD", especially when you're building your team from ground up.
Finding and negotiating contract with a potential candidate can take from 2 weeks to 2 months. If it takes less than that, you're rushing. If it takes more than that, you're not talking to enough candidates.
Having said that, I'll focus my advise on finding talent here:
Clichéd as it may sound, Linkedin was my go to platform for finding new talent.
As I had a wearables company, I'd start by typing "Wearables" and follow it with the kind of talent I was trying to find, to narrow down my search. So for UX personnel, I'd type "Wearables UX" and hit ENTER.
Out of 1000s of search results I get, I further narrow it down by filtering the candidates from their experience. The best filter criteria was past company. I'd select Jawbone, Fitbit, Apple to find talent with the experience I was looking for. (That's almost like poaching. Sorry Apple.)
Talking to one or two potential candidates is never a good option. You must talk to atleast 25 potential candidates at once. I used to message 25-30 people in one go, out of which only 7-8 would reply. Their response used to be either positive or negative. If negative, next day I'd message another 20-25 people to keep it on a roll.
3. The Message
Here's a sample I used to send:
This is the kind of response I used to get:
After this, I'd usually schedule a call time with the person. After the call, I used to assume I'd never hear back from this person. This helped me handle rejections very well.
Reaching out is just first step. There's usually a lot of back and forth before you sign someone on. More on that later. :)