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Tips to Hire the BEST Interns and Contractors for Business Growth. by @luckifit

by LaKisha Greenwade | Featured Contributor  

Although solopreneurs rely heavily on technology to automate tasks and maintain a lean organization during the forming and growth phase, it’s inevitable that human help will be needed to add value to your business. It’s projected that employment will be highest from 2014-2024 amongst jobs that require higher social and analytical skills: 83 and 77% respectively.

Prevent overwhelm and enhance your productivity by hiring qualified contractors or interns to not only get the job done, but done well. Where do you start? Consider the role or job that if filled, would make your life much easier. Write a description of the duties then consider the qualifications and type of person you want to fill it.

When picturing your ideal candidate, consider soft skillsets that are hard to teach such as emotional intelligence, curiosity, adaptability, and critical thinking. Also, determine if you desire a team player or one who likes to win alone.

Keep in mind the following ten tips and helpful questions that lead towards a successful hire:

  1. Use behavioral interviewing techniques.
  2. Avoid bias- but listen to your gut, otherwise known as your intuition. Don’t dismiss facts presented by the employee during the interviewing process.
  3. Determine if the employee is a fit with your company brand- DO they uphold the same values and work ethic? Does their personality and energy ALIGN (not MATCH) your organization or the one you are trying to create?
  4. Are they self-aware? Do they consider the impact of their actions and words?
  5. Do they DO MORE than what is asked?
  6. Do they embody an entrepreneurial spirit? Do they enjoy partnering, learning, and experimenting?
  7. How well do they communicate? Assess this from the time they apply for a position with their resume or inquiry, ongoing email and phone communication pre and post interview, as well as how they treat all people (if you’re able to assess this in a public space).
  8. Determine YOUR management and communication style- Are you collaborative? A Micromanager? One who trusts employees to get the job done? Determine if your management and communication style is a fit for the respective candidate to achieve success for the project or mission.
  9. In many cases, interns will have limited working experience. Instead assess, their drive, passion, attention to detail, flexibility, and willingness to learn. These characteristics go a long way and will be essential foundational qualities that aid in the perfect employee molding process. Don’t be afraid to hire for a trial basis such as 30-90 days.
  10. Compensation matters when attracting the perfect candidate and managing your business cash flow. Research compensation norms and determine the level of supervision required for the task at hand. This will impact your offer.

Start small. Hire for a specific project and assess if the candidate is a good fit assume other roles in your business. For instance, hire for help with a PowerPoint project, small social media campaign, or event management assistance.  If you still feel uncomfortable with the hiring process, utilize resources and tools form SCORE.

To determine market rate, post a project on LinkedIn where contractors can submit bids for your job. Be mindful of how minimum wage impacts the position you are hiring for as well as the identification of a 1099. Peruse sites such Indeed, Internship posting sites, Craigslist, and local universities with internship opportunities to determine market rate.

Ultimately, the process of on-boarding the right help will enhance your business productivity and allow you to MANAGE your business versus WORKING IN your business. Your confidence as a leader will grow and hopefully you will be on a path to crush financial goals.

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