GROWING YOUR BUSINESS: Finding and hiring the right people

by Dan Beaulieu
Business consultant

Owners of businesses both large and small tell me that the biggest challenge they are facing today is finding, hiring and keeping good people. Unemployment in our state as well as all over the country is at record lows. It seems that everyone who wants a job has one already. It is bad in Seattle where I go to work with a company every month, that one company started giving away new Tesla’s for any new hire who stays a year.

Electronics companies in Chicago are stealing one another’s employees so often that war has been declared and companies are suing each other.

The same is true for the companies here in our area. So, with that in mind, here are a few tips on how to hire and keep the right people in your company:

  • Know who you’re looking for: Develop a good job description of the position you are trying to fill. The more detailed you can be about the position the better it will be. Include overall responsibilities, daily duties, qualifications, compensation package, and any special requirements.
  • Show them the future: Don’t offer prospective employees a job, offer them a career or at least training in your business. Show them how they will learn valuable skills that will make them more valuable in the future. No matter what your business is, there is always something to be learned. Show your prospective employees the bigger picture, the future of working with your company, even if your company will be a stepping stone to a greater career in the future.
  • Offer security: If the person is a bit older show them how if they do a good job, they will be able to count on a solid job as long a s they need one.
  • Offer training: No matter what your business, you can teach someone how to do it. Remember, the fact that you own your business puts you in a special category in terms of your experience making you a perfect candidate to act as a mentor/teacher to your employees
  • Hire for passion: Look for passion first. Even if the person knows nothing about your business. You can teach the business, you cannot teach passion
  • Hire slowly and fire quickly. Take your time when hiring the person, (even if you don’t have much time) it will be worth the extra effort you make to not only completely vet the candidate but also spend time with him or her to make sure of the right fit. There is such a thing as company culture, and you have to make sure that the candidate will fit into that culture. And in the end even if you have done everything correctly once the person is hired, if you see that it is not working, then do yourself and that person a favor and let him or her go weekly. And believe me you will know pretty quickly.
  • Respect: Respect your team. Show them the courtesy that you want to receive yourself. Be fair and honest and open with them and they will follow you through thick and thin. Next time we’ll talk about team building, another great way to grow your company.

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