You're at an exciting crossroads for your small business; your company is growing and it's time to hire and manage new employees. You may have prior management experience, but managing people in a small business is different than in the corporate world. Here are some tips and best practices to consider when hiring and leading your team:
Hire for Skill and Personality: In a business with less than 10 employees, it is even more important that attitude and personalities don't clash. You aren't just hiring for skill; take the time to get to know your potential employees, how they handle conflict, what type of environment they thrive in, etc. With a smaller team, one person who causes conflict is even more destructive to the culture, so go with your instinct and hire people who fit with your personality and vision for your company.
Let Go and Have Faith: Delegating can be challenging for small business owners who are used to doing almost everything on their own. If you have done your due diligence when hiring new employees, it's time to train them and then give them space. Offering oversight and advice is helpful; micromanaging is not. By letting go of the way you have always done things, you may find that your new employees have fresh ideas that help your business thrive!
Build Good Relationships: Running a small business means everyone is very busy. It can be challenging to find time for team building, but it's important. Get to know your employees both professionally and personally and do team building exercises to help employees get to know each other, too.
Communicate Goals: Help employees invest in your vision and strategy by communicating your company's goals clearly and frequently. Create measurable processes that let employees know how they are contributing to your company's overall success.
Automate: As a solopreneur, you likely carried a lot of information in your head; it's time to automate! There are many (free!) small business applications that help manage...; these will help employee communication and lets everyone work from the same page!
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