It’s That Time Of Year Again – Hiring Season

hiring-creditWith summer drawing to a close and the busy season just around the bend, it’s a time when many business owners think of hiring on new staff.

Hiring requires a process; it’s not as simple as hearing about a friend and creating the role fit for them, nor is it a matter of choosing resumes to fit with what you think you need.  Hiring and keeping the right candidate in the role requires patience, a keen sense of what your business model is, and a time commitment to get it done correctly.  Nothing is worse than having to let someone go because you hired the wrong person for the job.

I’d like to share with you a hiring process that I recommend to many of my SMB owners, and it has been met with great success.

The Hiring Process

  1. Define the role. The goal here is to look at your company and define what type of role is needed. Consider not just the qualifications for the role, but also personality and type of person needed. For example does the role require a person to be detail-oriented, highly organized or a strong communicator?
  2. Begin your search for the right candidate. Don’t be so concerned about their skills and experience – you can teach these or send them for additional training, you want to make sure you have the person that meets the role’s requirements, has the right attitude and personality and is a good fit for your company’s culture.
  3. Think about whether this role is junior, intermediate, or senior and this will help to define where you advertise.  Never forget to ask your clients, colleagues and other acquaintances if they know of anyone who would be a candidate for the role.
  4. Before you interview your candidates you’ll need to create two key measurement documents: one is the list of interview questions and the other is a practical or situational exercise for them to complete. This exercise could be a presentation or a written test or a hands-on test – something to show you how they would perform on the job.
  5. You’ll need to create a metrics for each step of the interview process – one set of metrics for the interview and another for the exercise.
  6. Interview as many candidates as you can. Even if you have a gut feeling about a person, make sure you have a few other candidates to compare to.
  7. Make sure you are consistent, giving each candidate the exact same questions and same exercise.
  8. After the interview and exercise score each candidate. You might be surprised at what you discover. Often even though our gut points to one candidate, the test really highlights who is the best candidate.
  9. When the metrics points to a clear winner – hire them.
  10. Once hired, ensure you have an onboarding process or training and orientation so they have time to understand your business, your processes and your company culture.

On a final note, it is important to understand that without the proper training, tools, and processes in place, hiring someone with years of experience and numerous connections will not have the effect you’re looking for. You must first have the foundation in place before hiring a candidate with the right skills and motivation.

Do you have a hiring process?  Is it working for you? I’d like to hear your own experiences, so please share them with me in the comments!

Are You Communicating Effectively?

Effective communicatecommunication skills are the foundation of success not only socially and personally, but in business as well. Communication is essential to the success of any business, but it is often overlooked. In my many years dealing with business owners, I have seen time and time again the effects poor communication between team members can have on a business.

As a business owner, it is important to understand that communication can only be successful if the recipient of the message comprehends what they are being told. The communication process is a two-way street – how the message is delivered is just as imperative as how we listen.

You cannot expect your team to take anything away from your meetings, briefs, or presentations if you do not engage them and take the time to craft your message to help them understand it. Your expectations and desired outcomes must be made clear in order for your team to deliver.

Follow the three easy steps below to improve the communication in your business:

1.    Listen

  • Learn to listen to your team, both verbally and non-verbally. Observing how something is said can be just as valuable as listening to what exactly is said.

2.    Encourage

  • Be supportive of your team and encourage others to be involved in discussions and meetings. Open and honest dialogue will provide you with great insight into your business.

3.    Be Consistent

  • Deliver your message consistently each time, using precise and exact language, clear ideas, and an assertive manner. Regardless of whether the message is positive or negative, your language and manner should not change.

Your team, and business will benefit exponentially from improved communication in the workplace. How do you effectively communicate with your team? I would love to hear your feedback in the comments below!