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5 Things To Know Before You Hire Your First (Or Next) Team Member

We’ve all heard the leaders, CEOs, and bosses who can’t let go and hire help or allow other team members to show up and thrive in the company. Simply put, those bosses will not be able to build an A-team until they learn to hire and delegate or outsource efficiently.
Leaders may sometimes use l anguage about team building which includes, “They won’t be able to do it like I do it.” “I’m not good at this.” or “I wish I could clone myself.” That type of language is not conducive to growth.
CEOs, visionaries and business owners have to delegate effectively or they have to hire someone to do this for them- no pun intended.

 

Below are 5 tips to help you hire your first or next team member.

1.  Delegate or outsource before you’re ready.
When you hire from a state of urgency and you’re in need of help, there is no time to effectively onboard a new team member. At that point you just need help! You need them to dive in, catch on, and take some things off of your plate. They’ll be able to do some of this successfully and you’ll find some relief. After all, that’s what you were going for. However, the real work to establish repeatable processes through an onboarding process will have been neglected.
 
As time passes, the inevitable will happen. Your new team member will make a mistake and you may have thoughts like “You’ve been here 6 weeks, how could you not know that?” “This team member is amazing, how could they have missed that?” You may feel let down and have a fleeting moment of wondering if you hired the right person. To be clear, if your team member was amazing before the mistake, I’m willing to bet that they’re still amazing.

 

When you hire in haste and leave out pertinent details during orientation/onboarding, you are not giving your new team member the best shot at succeeding; furthermore have the expectation that they will eventually miss something you should have shared during the onboarding process.  

 

When you delegate before you’re ready, you’ll be in a better space to walk the new team member through the onboarding process in your business without haste. You will also be in a better place to answer questions as they start to grow with you. This approach will allow for your team members to start operating in their zone of genius and providing value to your company in no time. You will also have room to reflect and evolve into a better leader during the process. 
2. Write down your processes. 
Document your workflow as you’re doing it and when you hand it over to someone else, they’ll see how you’ve handled certain things. When going over your processes, you may want to discuss what stays (like a certain piece of software) and where you’d like to improve or are willing to try new software.
These types of things will help you find someone that is compatible with your business. You may seek team members that have expertise or you may be willing to train from day 1, process 1 and let them learn, explore and grow. Either way, having a process as a foundation for which to build upon will enable your team member to succeed and for your business to grow. 
Implement your processes with your team members, allow them to walk through your draft and fill in the action steps to set your business up to run like a well oiled machine.
In the early stages of documenting your processes you may find that you are tweaking and finding what really works. This is normal. Operations experts, like myself, can help you create a framework to build out your process. You can add your process to a consistent template/framework.  I don’t however, recommend you getting a complete cookie cutter or accelerated process manual handed to you. It will sit on a physical or virtual shelf because it will not encompass your business methods, values, and expertise.
3. Hire your first (or next) team member.
 
The most important goal is to hire the right person for the job. New team members can be found through word-of-mouth, previous contractors, LinkedIn, Indeed.com, your email list and more. Some online service providers have even used Craigslist to hire A-players for their team.

 

Compatibility is very important in the hiring process. Make sure your values are aligned and that they are on board with your mission.

 

Have grace if you’ve done everything to make sure you’ve hired the right person and it doesn’t work out. Release them gracefully and quickly, if they’re not a good fit–don’t give up on a team member who is a good fit. They are out there. 

 

4.  Communicate Effectively
Determine when and how you’re going to check in. If the position is virtual, are there any in person meetings that are mandatory during the year? Make sure to note that the meetings need to be distraction free.

 

Also, think about the flow of the meeting. What needs to be discussed on a weekly, bi-weekly, and/or monthly basis? The team member will be prepared when it’s time to meet you and they’ll be able to update you accordingly on their project.

 

How are emergencies handled within your business especially if it is outside of work hours or would cause them to go over their allotted hours.

 

Are you going to check in the email apps like Zoom with video or on a communication app like Slack?

 

Foster an environment where your team knows that their zone of genius is encouraged.

 

Effective communication is essential so that the culture of your business can remain challenging but non threatening and so that over time you can attract the BEST people to join you as you grow and build your business.

 

5.  Show appreciation
Show appreciation for the people that are helping you to build your A-team. People like to be noticed. Everyone’s job is needed and it will take each team member to work effectively for you to grow!

 

Delegation and team building can be a fun experience. Remember to delegate before you are ready, write down your processes, communicate effectively, and show appreciation.

 

Directors of Operations, like me, are trained to come into your business and help you hire your next team member. If you want to learn more about how I can help you with hiring, please reach out to me at mary@marystewart.net

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