The need to expand is the result of your company’s growth. And with expansion comes a larger office, a wider network and a must to build a bigger team.
When your small business gains momentum and you find that you’re unable to fulfill all the work by yourself, you have to hire your first employees carefully and build your debut team. Even though you’re hiring a relatively small team, you shouldn’t treat this as a trivial process.
A lot of potential candidates are eager to join new, thriving companies so that they can grow with them, and if you fail to construct the “right” team, your business’s growth can be severely stunted.
When You Hire …
Here are some things to remember when building a small team to match your company’s big ambitions:
Hire employees for specific needs
If the demands for your products are increasing, you’ll need to hire an extra pair of hands to complete orders, take calls and handle the administrative tasks. If your products are not quite reaching the sales levels you desire, you need to hire a good salesperson to help you raise the numbers.
The point being, you must hire who you actually need and not who you think you might need just for the sake of expansion. Once you identify a specific need, you’ll be able to comprehensively discuss the job details and specifications to the candidate. This will help create a productive work environment as your team should know exactly what their work objectives are and therefore, help your company grow in an efficient and hassle-free manner.
Make sure employees fit your company’s culture
If you’ve defined a certain way that you want your company to function, work and jell, then you’ve got to make sure that your employees adhere to that culture. The last thing you need during the early stages of your company’s growth is a troublesome employee who will cost your business a lot of money down the line.
Give your potential employee a short test during the application process to find out if they can adapt and identify with your company’s culture. Whoever scores the highest should be favored as a possible employee.
Only hire people you can afford
Don’t hire a candidate who requests a better salary than what your company can afford. They’ll end up taking the position but will always be on the lookout for a better career move.
They won’t put in the same effort and attention that a small business needs to progress. It’s better to have a contented employee who can learn as they grow and are happy to be a part of a team’s wider goals.
Once You Hire …
After getting the right type of employee, it’s important to follow these important rules to maintain a productive, quality team for your small business:
Set clear goals and objectives
Set weekly or monthly goals for your employees to reach. Reward them generously when they reach their targets. This will give them the incentive to work hard and will ultimately keep their job satisfaction at a consistent high.
You could measure your employees’ performance against specific key performance indicators so that you can determine what needs extra attention for them to get better results. You could devise a detailed set of guidelines that your staff can easily follow, or you could provide employees with any resources necessary to keep their work routines fault-free.
Motivate your team
When you set goals and targets for your employees, ensure that they are interesting and gratifying to accomplish. For example, hold a meeting with your team and tell them to not only hit a certain number of sales but also to be the best sales team in the city within the month.
This will create a sense of urgency and excitement amongst employees as the goals they are trying to reach are not only clear and well-defined, but it also inspires and gives a sense of fulfillment. Each time your team achieves their goals, it’s best to compensate the challenge and efforts they’ve exerted. A well-rewarded team will go on to become a successful team.
For employees who are not performing well but have the potential to do so, it’s up to you as a leader to inspire them to reach their prime. Provide constructive feedback rather than sending mundane emails or just pointing out negatives without helping them to improve.
You could also try to place them in a different position for a day. For instance, put a poorly performing sales rep in the finance department for an afternoon to do some basic administrative work. Be sure to explain your reasons for doing so to avoid a negative reaction. Tell them that you see a lot of potential in them but you want them to refresh their focus and come back stronger in their usual tasks.
When you build a team, you always have to remind yourself of your responsibilities as a mentor and leader because employees are often seeking positive feedback and reassurance.
Get your team invested in your business
The difference between an employee and an employer is that the latter cares for the life of the business much more than the former, who merely works for their monthly salary. Even if you follow the first two points in this section, you should still try to get your employees involved in the direction of your business in some way so that they feel like they are a part of the company rather than just working for the company.
When you have important decisions to make, ask your employees’ insights and opinions. You never know how much a fresh perspective can benefit your brainstorming session. Additionally, employees will feel encouraged to work harder for something that they helped to develop.
Getting your team invested in the business creates loyalty, job satisfaction and a sense of trust that can lead to a harmonious and successful team ambiance.
If you can keep in mind what you need to do when hiring an employee, you’ll be well on your way to achieving great results for your business. All candidates should be “vetted” thoroughly enough to ensure that they’ll conform to the company culture and will work well with others to form a successful team.