The Ultimate 7 Point Checklist for Small Business OwnersThe backbone of a great business is the people working hard to make it a success.

If you’re a ‘one man band’ looking to expand your services, you may have the capital and experience to know what you need from a ‘dream team,’…but you may not be 100% sure on how to go about finding them.

This post will run through a seven-point checklist for hiring your dream team to help you ace your search and hiring Dream Team.

#1. Define The Role

Whether it’s your first hire as an entrepreneur or your 20th, taking on new staff always presents challenges. As CEO, it is your job to ensure that you make the right choice with your new candidate, as you could potentially lose out on profits once you factor in the cost of advertising, recruitment, administration, and so on.

First, make a list of all the core competencies you need from the new hire. If you are relatively new to the business, this may mean that you would be looking for someone with a range of talents. Or, at least someone who is willing and quick to learn, provided they excel within certain areas, e.g. sales.

If you’re more established, you may be looking for a highly skilled team member to carry out niche processes. A ‘jack of all trades,’ in these cases, may not be such a good fit. Conduct lots of research by looking at advertisements for similar job roles in other companies, taking note of the going rates of pay, qualifications, years of experience, etc.

#2. Outsource Where You Can

The wealth of options available for entrepreneurs looking to outsource certain tasks has coincided with the boom of the VA (virtual assistant) industry.

If you are looking for a particular task, like a website build or social media management, you can avoid taking on a full-time marketer and instead break up these duties into discrete tasks, projects, and contracts. Find a suitable remote worker from Upwork or PeopleByTheHour to do the jobs instead, saving you a lot of money.

#3. Define Your Values

To ensure that the new hire fits in with your company culture, you will first need to explain in clear terms what your company culture is.

Go back to your original business plan and forecasts for the next few years. and identify the traits you need to help you achieve the vision you have for your business.

#4. Define The Behavioral Attributes

Recruiters use psychometric tests to help them match the best personality types to varying job roles. Every company’s requirements will be different, even if the positions perform the same function.

Many of us have heard of the Myers-Briggs personality test, but for recruiters, this personality test reveals little about a candidate’s employability. A test called The Big Five is preferred over Myers-Briggs because it provides more insight on a person’s negative traits.

‘The Big Five’ can be tested in different ways. However, they work by giving people a score on the high-low scales of:

  • Extraversion
  • Agreeableness
  • Conscientiousness
  • Neuroticism
  • Openness

The language of these terms can seem alarming. However, it is important to remember that for certain roles, things like high agreeableness may not prove so useful (in negotiation roles, for example). Building a good sales team takes time and dedication — don’t be rushed into hiring ‘green’ salespeople as your profitability will plummet.

#5. Shortlisting Candidates

Once you have crafted your job role and defined your company values and key personality traits, it’s time to advertise and start the process of selecting candidates.

Prioritize your list of skills and behavioral attributes and give each of your potential candidates a score.

Once you have made your list for interview, decide how you’re going to assess their capabilities effectively. You may want to consider:

  • Interviews in front of a panel, or in groups
  • In-tray exercises where you give interviewees a task to complete representing one of their core competencies
  • Presentations (if you’re recruiting for a sales or marketing role)
  • One-day trials or extended probationary periods.Hiring Dream Team
                                              Image credit: unsplash

It’s recommended that you find out as much as you can about the candidate’s previous roles, and it’s also worth snooping around on social media to get a feel for them.

#6. Successfully Onboard The New Hire

Hiring your dream team doesn’t end when you draw-up their contract. It is commonly believed that it takes around 90 days to get your new hire up-to-speed and working productively.
Providing a thorough training and onboarding process takes time and careful planning.

Make training manuals, record video tutorials of ‘on-screen’ processes and provide all you can regarding automated tools to help them reduce time and error in mundane tasks.

  • You can find a range of automated solutions for every industry, things like:
    Plugins that can schedule social media posts, blog content, and inventory, all through your online storefront — train staff once, and you won’t have to keep asking them to do the same, mundane tasks
  • Financial automation tools can manage bookkeeping and accounts, generate invoices automatically, calculate sales tax, etc.
  • Chatbots and automated customer order tracking systems can streamline customer service tasks
  • RFID sensors and automated health and safety compliance software can be utilized for manufacturing and supply chain services

…the list is ever-growing and investing in new technologies, as well as staff, will help your business grow.

#7. Motivate Your Team Members

Once you have introduced your new staff and systems into the mix, it is down to you as a boss to do your best to provide a positive and productive place of work.

For more, check out this free checklist on How to Create High-Performing Teams.

One Last Thing…

Do bear in mind and plan financially for your staff to leave, or for their jobs to ‘expire’ as time goes on. As a business owner with a company on the rise, the skills you need in the beginning may not be as useful to you as time goes on.

Also, plan for your company culture to change and diversify in terms of personality fit, as the number of roles and operational complexity increase.

QUESTION: What’s your best tip (or question) on hiring great candidates? Share in the comments box below.

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