Great People = Great Profit
I truly believe people are the foundation of any successful business, I know that is true in my business.
Finding the right team members is more than just ticking the skill set boxes. Many of the business owners and HR professionals I’ve worked with have interviewed the ‘dream candidate’ only to discover that they interviewed brilliantly, but the reality of working with them was drastically different.
Recruiting is time consuming, frustrating and interrupts us from doing what we do best. But, I urge you to invest in this process – it is critical to the success of your business and can deliver huge rewards.
Revenue follows superstar recruits
It is true. And here is why. The right people, in the right position, with the right support, will flourish. They will enjoy their job and get on well with their colleagues. They will deliver above expectations on customer service and always want to improve. I guarantee your customers and clients will notice. Happy customers make fantastic brand advocates, they will recommend your products and services at every opportunity.
To be a business people actively seek out, you have to start with your team – the people who are face-to-face with your customers every day.
So how do you find the right people?
The qualifications and skills to perform a specific function can vary dramatically between industries and roles, but the underlying foundations of a successful recruitment process are the same, irrespective of seniority or credentials. You can teach a team member how to accomplish certain tasks, but you cannot change their underlying character.
At Meades we encourage our team to understand more about their own communication style, and the styles of other members of the team. Simply understanding each other is enough to dissolve tension that can arise from miscommunication.
Here’s an example, if Jane needs lots of detailed instructions to feel confident in completing a new task (because that’s her personal communication style), and Dave asks her to ‘just get X done’ without further explanation Jane is not going to perform well. If Dave spends just a few minutes going through the details and confirms that Jane has everything she needs, he is preparing her to succeed – Dave gets the help he needs on his project, Jane succeeds in a new task and the business is productive. Everybody wins.
It is also fantastic for matching the right candidate to the right role. An introverted detail orientated person might be an amazing compliance accountant, but ask that same person to fulfil a sales role and you will be in trouble.
So how can this help you increase your profits?
We have already established that happy customers lead to more referrals, longer customer retention and repeat business, but there is more.
Great team members are customer magnets. I know from personal experience, when people have joined our team their previous clients have tracked them down and moved their accounts to Meades.
Bringing it all together
If you have read any of my blogs, you will know I am a huge fan of systemisation and recruiting is no exception. The system in my business is simple, but every stage has been designed to ensure only the top candidates – those that are good for my business and for whom we are a good fit – make it through to final interview.
We start with our team charter, you can see a copy of it here. This sets out clearly what we expect from a team member, and what a team member can expect from us. If the individual doesn’t buy in to our culture, we and they know it is not going to work – so why waste anybody’s time.
If a candidate is on board, we ask them to fill in a form with their contact details. They automatically receive a link to a questionnaire. It is based around the work of Nigel Risner, you can learn more about his work here and is designed to give us a clear picture of their personality type. There are no right or wrong answers, it is simply about aligning the right person with the right role.
Next, the candidate is invited to complete a simple online form, they enter their contact details and the answers from the questionnaire.
We also ask for a covering letter and their cv. Why use a covering letter? Two reasons, first, it is a less formal way to communicate than a cv – we get a flavour of their personal style, but even more importantly we get to see if they follow the simple instructions, an essential skill for any systemised business model.
There are countless other ways to refine your candidate list, I recently heard an entrepreneur speak at a local event. He has grown his business from 6 people to over 300 so he knows a thing or two about recruiting. He would discard a disposable cup on the floor of the corridor before the interviewee arrived, if they instinctively picked the cup up on the way to the meeting room he knew they were his kind of person – simply because they cared.
So how can you apply this in your business?
Start by reading our team charter, here’s the link once again. I hope it will inspire you to create your own team charter, identify why your business is a great place to work and help your next recruit to buy in to your ethos before you have even met.
“The world is full of willing people. Some willing to work, the rest willing to let them.”
Robert Frost, American Poet