When a business that’s scaling decides to make a new hire, it’s usually because the existing team is at breaking point. Normally something has to give to keep the existing work relationships in tact.
Planning for this event in advance will save you time and money in the long run. Here’s Ceri’s three steps to look at before making that big hiring decision.
1 – Decide on the role you want the new person to perform.
In small business, founders tend to do everything. While it might be hard to let go of something that’s important to the success of the business, at some stage you must let go to some extent. Consider what activities give you energy (is it developing a new product, perfecting an existing one, making sales, managing the team, or doing the finances?) and identify what activities sap the energy from you.
“The tasks that sap you are the ones to offload.”
Develop a role description that describes the tasks that involve the skills you do not enjoy and advertise for this role. Filling this gap with someone who does enjoy these skills will free you up to concentrate on those activities that give you the energy to keep going.
2 – Make sure the role they’re going to perform is clear.
One of the biggest issues in teams is role clarity, either someone stepping on someone else’s toes, or someone not doing something that everybody thought they should be doing. People feel safe when they are contributing to a team and they understand the value they add to that team.
A clear role description up front will not only attract the person with the right skills, but will also help guide day-to-day tasks moving forward.
Regular face-to-face meetings can help ensure this remains on track, and team meetings where changes are communicated will go a long way to removing any misunderstandings.
3 – Consider the type of person you need in your team.
People you interview should already have the skills required to do the job or have the potential (after all they have responded to your well documented role requirements as outlined above). However are they going to fit in with your existing team? Will they complement the skills you already have in the business?
One of the easiest ways to establish organisational fit is to determine if they align with your company values.
A key value of one small business I know is that everyone acts and behaves like an owner. Team members not behaving and making decisions like an owner tend to struggle in the broader team.
Once these three key steps are undertaken, you should have a clearer picture as to who you want to hire next. It will make the decision making process after interview simpler and easier.