As we head into another new year, “hiring” is one of the biggest obstacles that CEOs and business owners face. When I talk about hiring, I mean talent management. I mean putting a team in place that will enable a CEO to take their business to the next level and build equity in the business.
What do you need to do to put the best team in place for your business?
Create a clear organization chart.
To ensure you can put the right team in place, make sure you have an organization chart and a future organization chart. The future org chart should have position titles alongside a job description with key accountabilities for each position. Remember, when you create the job description, it is about the job, not the person. The job description covers what the company needs in that given position. This is critical.
Prioritize your hiring order.
From a payroll perspective, it is unlikely that you can hire everyone you want or need in one shot (let alone onboard them, etc.). So creating a priority list for hiring is key. Which company needs should be met first? Which positions are or should be interconnected?
Review your hiring process.
Spend some time reviewing and improving your hiring process. Of course, it must be a good process for you so that you can properly vet the candidate. What most people forget, though, is to think about the process from the candidate’s perspective. Remember, the prospective employee is interviewing you, too. Make sure the candidate gets a great sense of who your organization is, your values and your culture. It is important that they see what it will be like to work there and are excited about it! And of course, this is a chance for you to see if their values are in alignment with yours. You want them to enjoy the interview process, accept the position and show up on the day they say they will start (yes, unfortunately too many employees at all levels accept a position and then never show or decline at the last minute).
Look for both hard and soft skills.
When you are evaluating a prospective employee, it isn’t just about the hard skills that are specified in the job description. You need certain soft skills as well. What are they? Make sure you include open-ended questions and maybe even exercises in your interview process to determine what soft skills candidates have. Different jobs require different soft skills. Can they communicate? Do they have empathy? Are they able to think outside the box? What type of behavior and communication skills do they have?
Create a system for processing and saving resumes.
Automation can play a key role in your hiring process. If a candidate isn’t a fit for one position but they are good fit for the company, make sure to keep their resume. Look at your org charts (current and future) and see where, if at all, this person could fit. If it makes sense to hire them, then do it! Good people are hard to find and harder to keep. If you can’t have an automated system for your hiring needs, then at least create a spreadsheet to record candidates’ different skills for future reference (just remember they may not be available in the future).
Streamline your onboarding process.
Employee retention starts in the hiring process – making sure they are a good fit. But the next key step is your onboarding process. You are responsible for every new employees’ success. Your onboarding/training plan needs to be well-defined and include all the appropriate stakeholders in the process. This starts the moment they walk in the door on their first day. Roughly how long will it be before your employee is fully onboarded and productive? Make sure they know how they are doing in the process. Start holding them accountable from the beginning. What do they need exposure to/training on in the first week? Do NOT just give them operating manuals and have them read them because you are too busy to spend time onboarding them. Yuck. How boring is that? You have a high probability of losing the employee quickly. Make sure that over the first few weeks your new employee goes to lunch with another employee(s). Make them feel part of the organization.
Always be hiring.
You never know when the totally awesome candidate will walk through your door. Always be ready to look at your org chart and see where they might fit.
By Blair Koch