Building and managing a team can be a big stumbling block for many mompreneurs. We start out in business simply selling whatever it is we have to offer, but selling your stuff is just the first step to a thriving business. Once that is reliably taking place, one step to growing your business is learning to delegate. You do that most effectively by getting more talent on your team—talent that can help lift you up and take you beyond what you can do yourself. I’m going to walk you through seven tips to help you as a mompreneur successfully build a powerful team.
Tip #1: Get really clear on your hiring goals
We spend a lot of time and effort creating business plans and an ideal client profile but when it comes to hiring somebody, many times we don’t devote the quality time to sitting down and figuring out who our ideal employee is. Here are some questions you can ask yourself when determining what your ideal team member might look like.
- What do you need to get the job done?
- Do you need better marketing strategies?
- Do you need more people delivering or creating the products you offer?
- Do you need people managing the people who are delivering and making things?
- Do you need more admin support to manage all of that?
- What sort of personalities are you looking for?
Take a look at your own weaknesses. What do you need to find in the people that you hire to help compensate for the weaknesses you have? Take the time to think it through. This is critical. You set the path. Own that and then go find the right people for it.
Tip #2: Go be where the talent is. Once you’ve done tip number one and figured out who it is you want to hire, go hang out with them. Why not start with your own community? Your blog readers, newsletter subscribers, Twitter followers and Facebook friends are a great place to begin your search for the right person.
Beyond your own networks, try sources like LinkedIn. There are tons of job seekers there as well as communities of people who share interests and expertise. Look for industry-specific newsletters or message boards to join. I am subscribed to a bi-weekly PR newsletter here in Michigan that features various job seekers. I can assure you everybody in the PR industry is reading that newsletter. They’re looking for who’s hiring and who’s looking for work. People get matched up all the time. Rather than hoping your ideal employee finds you, save your energy and go be where they are. Hang out. Get engaged.
Tip #3: Make yourself knowable, relatable and accessible. If you want to attract great talent, great employees, great team members, letting people get to know a little bit about you through your blog, website and social media profiles is so helpful. It speaks a lot for your company if you demonstrate a professional image with a personal side. We want to have great relationships with people we work with. It’s important to put your best foot forward as a business and as a human. So put some personality out there!
Tip #4: Deliver a great product to the people that work with you. Don’t sell them on a promise you can’t deliver. When we’re hiring people on our MomBiz team, we make it clear that we respect that they are moms. We set expectations but we don’t expect our team to work around the clock. We ask them what their office hours are and we stay in line with that because that’s part of our culture. We also clearly communicate our expectations about when things need to be done and how to handle deadlines. We believe in leading the way in work-life balance. We believe in showing mompreneurs how to do that. So rather than making grandiose promises that you can’t deliver, make sure you offer something that you can deliver.
Tip #5: Learn about the people you want to hire. If you get referrals, you check people out on LinkedIn but you also need to do your research and find out what the rest of them is like. They’re going to present a business image as a job seeker but what else do they do? Do they have six children? Are they into cooking, extreme sports, hiking, blogging? Go study that. That’s cool stuff. It shows they have ambition. It shows they have drive. A person’s passions help complete them as a total person and you may find some great bits of talent you hadn’t even thought you needed while presenting them an opportunity to really shine.
Tip #6: Trust your gut. You’re a mom. You have instincts. If somebody looks great on paper but there’s just no chemistry when you’re talking with them, stick with that. Trust your gut.
Speaking of building teams, we are hiring over at MomBiz.com! We’re looking for a Director of Sponsorships to help attract the right brands to help us offer more to our mom entrepreneur community. Think that might be you? The details on this work-at-home job opportunity are right here.