Hiring the right staff for your business is no walk in the park when you’re a small business owner. It takes time, money, and a lot of patience to find the right candidate, train them, and make them your best employees yet. Many small business owners don’t have the resources or money to hire an HR department, so they become everything to everyone, adding, even more, stress on to running their business. Finding good candidates and building a great staff doesn’t have to take too much of your time as long as you are prepared and have a plan. Here are some hiring and staff management tips that will be sure to relieve your stress and help you build a long-lasting successful team.
The Hiring Process
You’re ready to start hiring. Where do you start? Nowadays one of the best places to post your job listings is through social media. Almost everyone has a Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn account, so chances are the people that are on specific job sites are also on social media and may see your job posting. Social media can also help with word-of-mouth. Just like word-of-mouth marketing works best to promote your business it also helps when trying to find people to hire. Someone who may know someone great looking for a job may see your post and voilà—a great candidate at your doorstep.
Another great option is to create flyers and put them up at local universities. University students have great dedication and motivation—two things you should look for in a candidate. No one is forced to go to college, and the fact that these people decided to further their education means that they have the willingness to succeed and that is a great trait to have in an employee. Plus, university students are always looking to make a few bucks to help them with the costs, so you can also explore ‘temp to hire’ to ensure they are the right fit.
And remember old school ways also work, so place flyers in your own business promoting that you are hiring. Always have paper applications on hand so that if people are ready to apply, they can fill out the application right then and there. This will allow you to move them along the process faster saving you and them time.
Just make sure to take your time and don’t hire the first potentially good candidate. Even if you are in a hurry to choose someone just make sure you evaluate them thoroughly. Hire the right candidate; the person who will do the job best, someone who meets all or most of your criteria and one that you feel will fit with your business’s culture.
The Training Process
Once you have decided who gets the job and you’ve hired them, it’s time to train them the right way so that they can become successful employees for you.
1. Choose Your Trainers
Choose a seasoned employee who has the skills to teach others and make them the trainer or teach them to become trainers. Don’t try to be the sole person who trains everyone. This should be a ripple effect. You teach the trainer, the trainer teaches the others, and the others learn well enough to become trainers themselves. When the trainer is well equipped then teaching runs smoother and faster for everyone.
2. Prepare Training Materials
Prepare a list of everything that the new employees need to be trained on and create training documents. This might take a little more time but you only have to do this once and then update when necessary. This will help you stay organized, allow the employees to self-train when possible and save you time and resources. If one-on-one training is needed, look into when your slow days are and schedule training for those days or just do them after-hours. Your employees will appreciate you more and be more willing to learn when they know you have set up a specific time for them and provided them with everything they need. Remember when employees appreciate you, their motivation and dedication for your business grow.
3. Training Schedules
Schedule training differently for each employee. Everyone is different, has different skill sets and learns at a different pace. So, that list of items mentioned above doesn’t have to necessarily go in order. Based on their interview, you know what their skills sets are, so start them off with what they know best and try to build upon that so that advanced skills build upon basic skills. Focus on one skill at a time and divide the training into levels. Make it fun for them to learn. Once they have mastered one skill reward them and then they move on to the next. In time you will have all of your employees mastering one or more skills, making your business more productive and successful at the same time. This goes for not only your new employees but all employees. There is always something new to learn, so keep your entire staff on a training schedule to give them the ability to better their skills and become even more of an asset to your company.
4. Outside Resources
Bring in experts to your organization or send your employees to training programs outside your organization to help with the training and management process. You and your trainers don’t have to do all of the training yourselves; try to either bring in experts from outside sources to train on specific topics for a day or two or send your employees to outside training sessions. You could also encourage your team to go online and watch YouTube videos or provide your employees with a subscription to Lynda.com to better their skills at something or learn a new skill every month. Learning and gaining experiences from others outside your organization will sometimes trigger a thought or two to help your employees understand something better. Use other’s knowledge to better your employee’s success.
5. Immersion Training
Immersion training is when you set up a couple of hours, or a day or two of training with the entire staff as a group. Evaluate your staff and come up with the best topic that your entire staff can benefit from. This will not only help the staff learn a new skill but will also bring them together as one to communicate and better their relationship with one another. When your employees work well together, your business will thrive even more.
The Staff Managing Process
The managing of your staff comes every day; making sure your staff is well equipped and always ready to get the job done.
The most important things to remember when managing your staff is:
1. Always make sure that everyone is happy and working to the best of their abilities.
Keeping a smile on your employees faces when they are at work is extremely important for your business’ success. Always keep your doors open for any employee to be able to freely come to you with any issues they may be having and try to solve it for them. Whatever the issue may be, whether it’s their pay, their hours or a conflict with another employee, set a good environment at your company. For many, they spend more time at work than they do at home so make them feel comfortable as best you can.
2. Always keep everyone on your staff on the same page.
Schedule daily or weekly team huddles to talk about open items or issues; making sure that everyone understands what they are supposed to do and what to expect. This will ensure that no one on your team feels neglected or left out and nothing falls through the cracks; keeping your business organized and productive.
3. If you feel that an employee is not meeting your standards and are just not the right fit, after all, it’s time to let them go.
It’s probably the worst part of a business owner or managers job; to tell someone that they’ve been fired, but it has to be done. Your business’s success is important, and if a staff member is the cause of you not being able to achieve your business’s goals, then it’s the right call. The rules and regulations on terminating an employee are simple. Robert Tzall, a commercial small business lawyer says, if the employee is not doing the job, “the employer is able to fire the employee at will.” It’s not good for your business, other employee’s morale or the employee in question to try to fit a square peg into a round hole.
Managing people is hard, especially when you’re wearing 6 million different hats at once. So just, be patient, hire the right people, train them properly and keep them happy to come to work every day. In addition, the training doesn’t have to stop with your employees; you too can benefit from keeping yourself on a training schedule to learn new skills that you can apply to your business and help it grow.