10 Ways to Hire Successfully
How to Hire Successfully
It seems that everywhere I go someone is hiring. Web designers are expanding their operation. Retail businesses need more sales people. Cleaning services need workers and with the summer upon us, landscapers need more help as well. Maybe you are a solopreneur and you are hiring your first bookkeeper or virtual assistant.
At the same time I hear a lot of complaints from businesses about their recent hires. Here are some of the complaints:
“They don’t have a good work ethic. They don’t show up on time and spend the day on Facebook instead of doing the work.”
“I hired them thinking they had the skills I needed. They talked a good game but now it I’m spending all my time on training and I thought that I would be freed up to do my work.”
Dave Ramsey in his book Entreleadership recommends that you hire slow and fire fast. Most of the time we do it the other way around. We think that just getting a warm body in there to do something…anything will help with the workload, only to find out that we are babysitting adults. Hiring done well is a process that can be repeated successfully over and over. Here are some ways to ensure that you get the right people in the right seat on the bus.
Top Ten Ways to Hire Successfully
- Create a hiring process and identify the steps–this should happen before you even begin recruiting applicants for the job. It should be a repeatable process that you can refer to each time you hire someone.
- Clearly outline the job that you are hiring for–be as specific as possible. For instance, you aren’t just hiring a third grade teacher or a web designer. Be clear about the knowledge they should have, the tasks they will be responsible for and what the job will look like when it is done and done well.
- Don’t depend on employment advertising— Your best referrals will come from current employees who are excellent at their work. They know the work and the culture. Encourage them to recommend people who would fit the mold when you have openings. Give them a bonus if you hire the person and they make it through the probation period. If this is your first hire, talk to other entrepreneurs in your business and see if they can recommend some candidates for your job. Or consider connecting with a strategic partner that can suggest referrals. For instance a business school, a design school or some other institution that would be connected to potential applicants.
- Make the first interview short and to the point–typical first interviews are one of the worst ways to evaluate whether someone is a good fit for your business. You need to have one to begin the process but use it to cover the basic facts and make sure the person meets the minimum requirements. Withhold judgement until they have made it through the whole process.
- Review the resume and references— this is necessary but again should simply be the beginning point. A resume is really a sales sheet and represents how well the individual has learned to sell themselves. Hopefully no one is dumb enough to give bad references, but you should check them anyway.
- Assess personality style– There are a lot of tools available but I find the easiest and most productive is the DISC personality assessment. This assessment will not only give you information about the individual that you are hiring, but how they can be expected to interact and work well with your team (who have also completed personality profiles). It will tell you where you will have complimentary styles and where you may encounter conflict. If you use a DISC tool that includes a sales profile, you can learn how your potential employee will best promote your product. Hiring an employee to work in their strengths, personality wise is a win/win for you both.
- Assess enthusiasm–You want someone who is excited about coming to work. When you talk about the mission of your business, are they on fire for the same things that you are? Do you see that enthusiasm played out in their everyday life? For example if you are hiring a teacher, does your interviewee have lots of stories about how they are committed to making a difference in the life of a child? If you are hiring someone to build websites, do they love exploring the mission of a business and then translating that into an online presence?
- Share the core values of your business–First it’s important that you know your core values! Then make sure that you share them with the potential employee and check for how they express those values in their work life.
- Use a creative interview process– Do something different that puts the individual in the midst of the job. Have a teaching candidate teach a sample lesson. Have the web designer create a sample web page. Give all the applicants a problem to solve or a project to complete. Bring them in for a day in a working interview where they not only shadow another employee but actually work by their side. Take them and their family to dinner to get a different perspective of their life, their goals and their motivation.
- Take your time–I know you want someone to get to work right away. I know you have deadlines to meet and jobs to complete. But a good hire will save you time in the long run. A bad hire… will suck the life and energy out of you as well as your business. It’s worth it to trust the process and use it in your favor.
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