Entrepreneurs: Looking to Hire? Avoid These 3 Hiring Mistakes
New entrepreneurs typically take on all business roles themselves during their first year of operations, by necessity not choice, according to new research published by SCORE, mentors to America’s small businesses. Still, the report shows that over half (54%) of startups are looking to hire in their first year of operations. If you’re considering hiring help for your small business, avoid making these common hiring mistakes:
Hiring too early
For starters, do you really need help? Perhaps there is business expertise that you don’t have; but a contractor may better suit your needs than a full-time employee. New entrepreneurs reported hiring help (most often contractors) when specialized expertise was needed in the realms of legal, manufacturing, accounting/finance and technology.
Second, can you afford it? It’s important to be realistic about your cash flow and work needs before adding someone to the payroll. Remember that hiring new staff comes with paying the necessary taxes and insurance, in addition to a salary. Also, keep in mind that a new employee will expect steady, long-term work. With these factors in mind, take a pause and ask yourself if you really need the help, and if you’re working as efficiently as possible with your current workload. Check out these tips for knowing when it’s time to hire your first employee.
Hiring the wrong candidate
Sure, a candidate may have a stellar resume and interview well, but are they really the right fit for your business? Test for a company culture fit: consider the core values that are critical to your company, and make sure that your candidate’s responses align with those values. You should also examine how the candidate interacts with other members of your staff, and consider how their communication abilities may influence the work they will be doing. Will they need to use remote work tools, or send client-facing emails? Create a checklist prior to the interview to ensure that all aspects of the job role are covered during the interviewing process. Here are a few best practices for designing a working interview.
Creating a high turnover
What good is hiring an awesome new team member if they don’t stick around? Employee turnover costs businesses time, productivity and money. Be clear and upfront about compensation and any opportunities for growth or promotion. Clearly communicate the benefits and company culture, and treat your candidates (and new hires) with respect and transparency. Just as you have options when it comes to deciding who to hire, most qualified candidates have other options as well. How you communicate and treat prospective and new employees sets the stage for how they’ll work with you, or leave you hanging.
You don’t have to do this alone! Connect with a free, expert SCORE mentor today for additional guidance and tips on hiring the right team for your small business. Make hiring mistakes a thing of the past!
This guest post was authored by Betsy Dougert
Betsy Dougert currently serves as Vice President of External Relations for SCORE. She is responsible for national public relations, government relations and sponsors. Her ten years of experience in marketing and communications have focused on building brand awareness and engaging stakeholders. She earned her master’s degree in strategic communications with a certificate in public relations from Villanova University.