One of the questions I’m asked most is about my hiring process.
I have gone from a one-woman show to a team of eight. Fortunately, I have a pretty good track record of hiring great contractors and employees. I’m just going to break down and explain what I do when I’m moving through the hiring process to choose another team member. Full disclosure: I have experience working in an HR capacity as a recruiter at my last job.
My Human Resources Experience
My experience in Human Resources involved putting out fires and having to think for other people. My experiences and involvement as an HR leader created doubt that good hires and good employees exist in the workplace. My previous human resource reality is one of the reasons why asking for help and getting to this point in my business was so hard. Eventually, I realized I had to move past my old bias.
Let Go of Previous Negative HR Experiences
I have a client who would like to start hiring people but isn’t quite ready to pull the trigger. She’s a financial coach, and I’m in the process of teaching her how to make sales. She was a project manager at her old job. As a result, she is used to having control of the workplace and having to think for people who were working under her. While working with her on sales, I realized her process of thinking for others was starting to trickle into her sales calls. I warned her she was applying her project management skills to her sales process, and this wasn’t working. We traced her method back to her last job in a corporate setting, in which she had to solve all the problems. She repeated this course so many times that thinking for others became an unconscious mechanism in which she blanketed all interactions.
When you’ve had a negative work experience such as bad management or bad employees, you need to make a conscious effort to keep the experience separate and not let this shadow all future interactions. I give this shadow hold me back for a long time. If you’re interested in reading more about this phenomenon, I suggest The Book Multipliers. The author shows you the difference between leaders, people who multiply their workforce, and people who let their team enter their zone of genius. Additionally, this book magnifies the difference between a multiplier and a diminisher, AKA micromanagers.
Three Tips for Hiring Successful Employees
Tip #1: Ask for referrals. Your network will undoubtedly have people whom they trust and are qualified. Many of my contractors came from referrals. My first virtual assistant was a referral from a Facebook group.
Tip #2: Ask for advice from an expert. When it was clear I needed to hire full-time support, I asked a friend who worked in a corporate setting. Her business is assisting companies with employee engagement. She highly recommended a young woman, Zenia, who was the receptionist at the building she lived in at the time. You don’t have to figure it all out yourself. There are people in your network and your orbit who most likely know more than you about hiring and can help you figure out what step to do next.
Tip #3: Be open to talent everywhere. I met my accountant at Fort Lauderdale airport many years ago. We happened to be on the same flight, going to the same conference, and my new CFO just so happened to be sitting in front of me at a meetup.
I took my future CFO’s card, went to her website and found out that she is a virtual CFO. I click on her “About” information, and I see she assists companies that are in the process of scaling. I ended up hiring her by the end of the week.
Ask for What You Want
Ask the universe for whatever you need. Ask for help because every time I’m having difficulty or how to solve a problem, I realize I need to get a grip and then ask the universe for help. I’m like, “Hey universe, I think this is what I’m looking for, please help me find what I need because I don’t know where to find it.” And then boom, what I need magically shows up!
I remember having this whole conversation with the universe in my head a few months before I met my accountant; I thought, ‘I think I needed an accountant.’ I wasn’t sure where to find an accountant then I met him at the airport. This interesting paradox occurs when you are in alignment, and you ask for help, and things work out.
My manager, Joanna, whom you may have met at Fin Con, was also a twist of fate. I had a lot on my plate, and I felt that I needed more support. About two weeks after I returned from a mastermind, I get this random email from someone who used to be a financial blogger, and they tell me that their friend Joanna is looking for work in financial management. That was another twist of fate, and that’s because I was open to what was going to show up.
Realistically, You Can’t Do Everything Yourself
I know that many of you struggle with this idea because you want to know that you will get your money back.
You cannot think about hiring people from the perspective of cost me money. You cannot look at hiring others from the lens of lack, and I don’t have the money to hire, or I’m so afraid to let go of the money. You have to think about hiring others from the perspective of investing money into your company to do what’s essential and make more money. And now that I’ve gone through this process quite a few times, I can tell you with certainty, if you hire the right people, it is going to make you more money. Your new employees or team members are going to pay for themselves. You’re just under-utilizing the resources. My accountant has paid for himself a million times over already, and so has Zeniah. Hire the right people and focus on A players. This was a big lesson I had this year – to only hire A players. Only hire A team, A players, and hire people based on culture.
We don’t take everything so damn serious. We have jokes, go out to dinner, and when trained Zeniah because she’d never been to Fin Con before, we went to a nice hotel on Miami Beach and enjoyed the day. Everybody on our team has a good sense of humor.
You have to look at hiring from the lens of I’m giving people jobs, they’re going to help me make money, and if I retain the right people, their work is going to pay for itself.
Resources that are mentioned or add value to this episode: