Your business is growing to the point where it’s time to start thinking about hiring. This is one of those good problems. You’ve gone from a side hustle to a recognized business, one that needs multiple people to get things done.

But this part is tricky. Hiring employees can make or break your business. You don’t want to hire someone who is in it for just a paycheck, and doesn’t care about the vision of your company. And then there’s the side of your team to think about. Too many workers means unneeded expenses, while too little means that nothing will get done. It’s a tricky process, and hiring needs will differ depending on your business.

But there are some general tips to help make the hiring process easier.

Get to Know the People You Are Hiring

Don’t see your employees as machines. When interviewing them, actually get to know them. You may think that doing a background check or some snooping on their social media is the way to go, but that’ll just come across as you trying to snoop and look for something you don’t like. Instead, chat with them. Listen to what they have to say. You can figure out their personality and determine if they’re the right fit for the company.

Don’t Make Your Job Description Too Intimidating

Whenever you write your first job description, it’s easy to go overboard. Like a single person wanting too much out of their potential partner, you start listing a bunch of qualifications that many don’t meet. For example, you may say your job needs five years of experience. The perfect fit for your job may be someone who only has two years, and is too intimidated to apply.

Obviously, you want quality in an employee. You want someone who has experience and can help your company grow in its infant stages. But you don’t want to scare away people who think they aren’t good enough for the job. Balance is key.

Focus on Soft Skills

When making the perfect help wanted ad, think about soft skills. What are those? When you think about skills, you think of specifics. They have experience with Excel, or have a few years dealing with customer service. Soft skills are traits that don’t have job experience attached to them, but are still important. One soft skill is a sense of humor, which can help keep the team’s spirits up. Then there’s a passion for working. As you’re writing your ad, think about the personality traits that would best suit your team.

Look Locally

Even if your business can be worked at online, hiring someone close to you is a good step. People love to support their communities and help grow a business that will put their town on the map, so try hiring some team members who love close by, people who you can have real interaction with that’s not limited to a Skype session. Post your help wanted ad on a local job board to get some local team members.

Let the Potential Employees Interview You

You’re the boss, so you may think you’re above getting interviewed or scrutinized. Cut that mentality out right now. You need to be a team leader, and your candidates should be able to ask questions about you. A good employee wants to know your vision, your personality, and why they should work for you. By putting yourself in the seat, you’ll be able to look at your own traits, and see if there’s anything you need to do.

Ask the Right Questions

When preparing your interview, think about the types of questions you should ask your candidate. These will differ depending on the job, but there are some general ones that have been tested over and over. Asking your potential employees about their best accomplishments is a good one, as it shows their passions and their skills. Give your employee some time to answer, too.

Don’t Be Afraid to Negotiate

A good employee is one who can negotiate. You obviously don’t want to give more than you have, but don’t be afraid to talk about hours and payment. Fair compensation means that your employees will put more effort into their job, so negotiate away. Just remember to come with a deal that satisfies both parties.

Above All, Get Passionate People

Employees work at jobs to make money. That’s a fact. You’ve probably worked at a job before where all you wanted was a paycheck. But for a small business, you need employees who will be passionate about where the company is going, for their benefit and for yours. By hiring a team that knows your vision, you’re guaranteed to expand your business. Get out there and hire a team that will put your company on the map.



Susan Ranford is an expert on job market trends, hiring, and business management. She is the Community Outreach Coordinator for New York Jobs. In her blogging and writing, she seeks to shed light on issues related to employment, business, and finance to help others understand different industries and find the right job fit for them.


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