How to Find the Right Employee for Your Small Business Jonathan Herrick You went into business because you believe in the product or service it supports, right? But now you realizes that you can’t do it all on your own. You want to bring in the right people to help grow your business but have no idea how to do that? There are several things you need to pay attention to when looking for the right candidate to join your company, so much so that the process can seem overwhelming. But don’t worry. This article will help you put it all in perspective so that you can successfully apply it to your hiring processes. Here are some qualities that you want to look for and how to find them in candidates: Are they any good? This seems like a simple point, but you would be surprised how many people don’t do the due diligence required to figure this out. Their resume may list several degrees, but does your position call for a bunch of acronyms after (or before) their names? Does having a Ph.D. in English really matter for a Project Management position? It is easy to become blinded by all the years of schooling but it is important to keep your feet grounded and see what is unimportant: can they do the job they are applying for? Do they have soft skills? You may have a person who is technically sound and knows how to configure hardware better than anyone else in the industry but can they relay that information to a colleague? How do they handle change? It is important to know whether the person you are hiring is able to communicate effectively and partner on projects. This is important in every business but more so in small businesses where people sit in close proximity and are responsible for a lot of functions at one time. Will they fit in? Before you dismiss this item on the list think about your company. Is there a certain feel that either you have fostered or that morphed on its own? Most companies have it – this unmentioned collection of thoughts and mindsets that permeates the business and your approach to work. It’s called company culture and it can be a good thing or a bad thing to specific candidates. Making sure that a person fits in with the culture is something you can glean in an interview but it is still difficult to do. After all, people are on their best behavior when sitting in front of a potential employer. It might be difficult to ascertain whether or not this candidate will “fit in” but it is important that you keep a keen eye toward them and their personality traits and include that in your overall assessment. But that’s not all. Finding the right candidate for the position in your company is not a one-way street. There are some things that you have to do to make sure that you are presenting yourself not only as an appealing option, but also in an accurate light. Know what you want. If you prepare the employment ad with an understanding of what the position entails and what skill sets are needed, you will get more applicants that match your requirements. Be clear and concise. Be sure to list required qualifications. This should weed out those who do not possess the proper skills to work for you. Set expectations properly. Candidates should understand the product they are working on and future goals before applying to the position. Without giving your candidates a roadmap of at least 3 months, they cannot accurately determine if the company is moving toward something they would like to be a part of. Hours and responsibilities are also things you should be upfront about. It will make for a better interview. Be nice. Another simple point but well worth posting. Create an ad that is respectful. A threatening or uncompromising tone will do more to damage your prospects than help to deter unwanted inquiries. Looking for candidates can be a difficult undertaking but there are several sites online that are highly traveled by potential employees such as Indeed.com and Monster.com. Social media has also stepped up as a tool for finding potential employees. Utilize LinkedIn to find people with the skills you are looking for. As always, reach out to your current employees and let them refer candidates.