Owning a business is a very rewarding achievement, being able to be your boss, control your hours and establish your own culture, but as all things go, every good thing has a bad counterpart. When owning or starting a small business, you will have a lot of tedious work that needs to be put into the business so that it can flourish, and one of the most important factors that go into any business big or small is who is there helping you grow – employees.  

Why is it important to hire the right people?

When looking for someone to represent your business, as a small business owner you are looking for someone to represent the values you have established, you want to find someone that feels the same as you do for your business, unlike corporate America, which can hire and train people as they come and go, you as a small business owner do not have that luxury as most of the time small business owners are stretched thin and must find someone that will be there long term or long enough so that you may breathe and enjoy your small business grow. Small business owners can rely on a recruitment agency or on their employees to be able to have customers keep coming back so that revenue keeps coming in, and that falls on the employees you hire and the service they provide. Recruiting can help take the stress off hiring the right people yourself and let you focus on other tasks to get your business to where it needs to be.

How can I employ the right people? 

There are so many resources available when it comes to looking for possible candidates to work at your business. From LinkedIn to an Instagram story thanks to social media, getting people to apply to be part of your business has never been easier. Choosing the right employee is the hard part, but here are a few ways to help narrow down the search.

  1. Set up requirements they must meet

  • What level of knowledge or education do you want them to have?
  • Is there any set of skills you would like them to have already, for example, for small business owners someone with a background in virtual assistant services would be a great advantage to have?
  1. Pay attention to the Resumes

  • Look for any grammatical errors.
  • Do they have any personalized information or are the duties and responsibilities under their past job descriptions generic?
  • Where have they worked before, do those past jobs correlate with the one you are hiring for, or if they have no prior job experience what else have they done that can make them a possible candidate. When it comes to hiring, an employee handbook can help you a lot more to keep details about your employees.
  1. Ask the right questions

  • “Where do you see yourself in the next five years?’ This is an example of an overdone and common question that is not needed. For you to choose the correct person You want to make sure you are asking the necessary questions that correlate to what position you are trying to fill.
  • If the job requires you to manage your workload on your own you would ask questions regarding their time management and how they work under pressure.
  • You want to know if the person you are interviewing can do the job you do for your business, and more importantly if they will be able to meet your standards of performance. 
  • “How do you like learning?” or “How do you welcome constructive criticism?” are great ways to find out how open they are to being coachable. When it comes to a small business expanding from just the owner to employees, some changes eventually become established due to changes that may occur, such as the business acquiring a new system for payments or setting up training for new software you want to implement. As a business owner, you want someone who will welcome these changes. 
  • Adjusting questions to what you are looking for helps you understand many things about the individual in front of you, you get to hear how they interact with you, and the answers give you insight into what you need to know for the position you are trying to fill. If an individual tells you that they don’t like when things change because they like things being constant, that may not be the answer you are looking for and will help you rule them out as a possible candidate.  
  • Sometimes the candidate may decide to go a different direction, and it’s okay to be upset or jealous of their decision; however, if you ask all of the right questions, and they still choose to go a different route, that means they were not a good fit long term.
  1. Background checks are your friend

  • After you have narrowed down your pool of candidates, you want to make sure and verify two very important things: you want to make sure they are who they say they are and that they have no issues in the past that may put you in danger or be a liability to your business. 
  • Small business owners have a lot of resources available to them today, and you can run identity and background checks on your possible future employees with the click of a button. 

You are now ready to hire

These are just a few tips that can help small business owners, from running a gift shop or a consulting firm, in choosing the right candidate for their business, and hopefully, these tips give confidence in what they are looking for, at the end of the day you want someone who represents not just your business but your values as well.