In most of these weekly chats we discuss the part of your business which is reactionary and situational, a "what-to-do-when," if you will. Over the next three weeks we will discuss the warmth and soul of your business, the people who run it. Yes, you read that correctly ... a successful business is "run" by the employees. You, as an owner or general manager, need to be the architect and let others carry out the plan to construct the highway.
Who do I hire/what kind of person do I need?
Normally this is the first question everyone asks and yet, in reality, this question comes later. The first questions are what is the plan or make-up of the business? What is the reporting structure and what are the job functions? Only after you decide how you want the business to look and act should you then "fill the position." Going back to our opening analogy, you first need to decide where the road is going and determine the traffic load before deciding what material to make it from. Have an ongoing business and convinced you cannot change? Some of the greatest and largest companies in the world have re-made themselves mid-stream in order to be more efficient.
Fill the position
Once your plan is in place, conduct your search to fill the position. Too many times, people are swayed in the hiring process by someone because of a certain skill or talent. Do not make this mistake. If you have charted the plan for the business properly, the position needs to be filled by a person with all the skill sets required by the position, not someone with some extra special ones deemed to be good for the future.
Energy and integrity
What we do in the rental business hinges on these two attributes. Too many times we only look for those with "industry experience." Why is that? There is nothing in our industry which cannot be taught with the exception of "energy and integrity." Open your eyes and widen your circle in the hiring process. An "inventory" of high-energy, positive-minded, honest and resourceful personnel will take your business to places you only imagined possible.
There are many sources for these attributes, from personality to skills to native ability, and each business has a certain look, feel and culture. Testing tells people you are serious and is the beginning of forming your team. Creating and fostering a team concept is the first cornerstone in building your business.
In this day and age, this is easily done and silly to ignore. Do not risk the culture you are building with potential infection from a bad apple.
Building the employee plan and finding the talent is the first step. Next week: Hiring and compensating for success - Part 2 of a 3 Part Series.
Questions or comments? Contact Mike Farley at mfarley@equipone.