The longevity of your business will depend on a variety of factors. One of the most important is the people that you build up around you. Having the right team can reduce your workload, and bring skills to the table that you currently lack. Making sure that you have an exceptional workforce supporting you and your business goals is essential. The challenge is making sure that the team you hire has matching goals and talents that you can use. Here are some of the key skills to look for, how to hire the right people, and how to promote loyalty within your team. If you started solo and your business is growing, there comes a point when you simply must start hiring. Here’s how.
The Essential Skills
Your first task is to identify the skills that you lack. When you are aware of these gaps in your skill set, this will make it far easier to identify the team members and roles that you need to look at more closely. Here are some of the core business skills that you need to be looking for on every resume.
Every business owner needs to keep on top of their financial management. This will become essential as you grow beyond your business plan, and hiring someone with experience managing the finances of a scaling business will be very useful. If you want to make certain that your cash-flow has no bottlenecks, and that your taxes are being declared correctly, then hiring team members with financial management experience will be one of the most useful hires you will make.
Marketing and Sales
Most entrepreneurs have something of a salesperson in them but may lack the experience to close the deal. When you’re making adverts for new roles, make sure that you highlight the need for people with experience of selling and marketing. Marketing is itself a skill that you will rely on more and more as your business continues to grow, and the more awareness your team have of modern marketing techniques, the more your business will benefit.
As an entity, your business is going to need to be able to communicate effectively with a variety of people. From investors to customers, suppliers to other team members, clear communication is more important than ever in the digital age. Look for those potential hires who explain themselves well in interview stages, and be aware that your way of communicating will reflect the branding and reputation of your business.
Look for Leaders
You may be the head honcho, but having a key set of people around who are prepared to take the initiative will be very useful. Leaders are not a threat, and your business will be weaker if you hire nothing more than sycophants who agree with every idea that you have. Look for people who have run teams before, and have experience with motivating them. Team leaders can keep your business running smoothly with minimal interference needed on your part.
The complexities of launching and running a brand new business can become daunting. That’s why having experienced project managers can be so important. Everything from website development to interior office design will come down to planning at some point, and having experienced members of your team can help reduce wait time, prevent workflow disruption, and ensure that a project of any type comes through quickly and efficiently.
How to Hire the Right Way
For some entrepreneurs, the first time that they start looking for support running their new business will be the first time that they have ever gone through the process of hiring from the employer’s perspective. This is a very different activity than being interviewed. Making the transition from frantic micromanagement to running a team can be quite jarring, and you will need to ensure that your hiring process is as smooth and effective as possible. The key things to consider are:
- The tone and vocabulary that you use in your job advertisement
- The questions that you are going to ask
- Deciding on the right recruitment strategies
- Knowing the right perks to offer
- Making decisions regarding salary
If you have never done these things before, they can get complicated, and you may find that you are not attracting the right caliber of candidate. Look for professional advice and do some research on the areas that you have no experience with. If this is your first hire, then focus on making sure that your first team members have the following skills:
- Flexibility of talent
- Can cope with rapid change
- Have a passion
- Are confident in their skills
Avoiding The Mirror
The strongest teams are those that have a wide range of personal and professional experiences. Diversity has been thrown around as a business buzzword for a reason. The more diversity in your team, the more variety you will have when it comes to ideas and skills. If your team are all the same, then they will come to you with the same ideas, and that can quickly reduce the effectiveness of your business on every level. Look at the problems of unconscious bias, and compare the ways that big name brands are tackling this recruitment issue.
As a secret weapon that you can use to attract and retain the best recruits, staff development is becoming a standard method when it comes to hiring the right people. By committing to the development of your workforce you are showing trust in them, and that can improve productivity and loyalty. Here are some of the best ways to look at developing your team.
During Onboarding – Have a reading list of training programs or business literature that you can give to your new hires on the day that you tell them they have the role. Some business leaders believe in the ‘hit the ground running’ philosophy, but this is rarely effective. Create a training program that includes introducing your new hire to the people that will be around them, and show them the layout of their workplace.
Communicate – The more that you listen to the needs of your team, the more that you will establish a connection with them that will go a long way to building brand loyalty. Ask for ideas and make sure that they are involved in the future of the company.
Invest Time – It could be that you have the best person possible applying for a position, but they lack the skills, experience, or even education to really make the role their own in the long-term. That’s where investing time will become effective. Allow team members to take time off if it’s for personal development. This could involve allowing for employees to increase their skillset while working with you. In fact, encourage such opportunities; employees could undertake an online BBA in Accounting by Walsh University which could be of benefit to your company once completed. Making sure that they have the time and space needed to complete their studies means that when they graduate, you have a loyal member of your team who is also a qualified accountant. This form of staff development is very effective.
Personalize Your Development Plans – Not every member of your team is going to need the same development strategy, and your commitment to improving your employees in ways that will benefit them long-term will be much more obvious if you take the time to create individual development plans for each team member. The more personalized, the more chance that they will get something positive from their development. A one-size-fits-all approach is never effective.
It can take both time and effort to make sure that you have the right people around you and supporting you. Not every person that you hire is going to be the right fit, and not everyone who wows you in an interview will stay with you for the duration. Take your time to get your hiring strategy and staff development ideas in place, and your business will have a much stronger chance of being a success.