It is time to grow and scale your business. Even if you don’t feel like it is time to start please understand that now is the best time for you to start to implement the necessary steps to grow and scale.
One of the first things you need to do is to get out of your head about growing and scaling. It is important if you want to be successful and make a long term living at what you do. Even if this is your hobby business I am sure you are saying to yourself sometimes “I wish I had more money” or I wish I could quit my job and just do this full time.
You will want to start to create a plan for your business to grow. Don’t wait until you need it. Create a plan so you are ready when you need it.
8 Steps to Having Your Dream Team in Business
#1 Keep Yourself Educated
You need to keep yourself educated and aware of the ever changing requirements to having a team. You will also need to continue educating yourself to be a better leader and on managing a team. It does take some work to stay on top of it but it will be worth it as you grow and scale in your business.
#2 Hire People Who Can Get The Job Done
Hire people who are willing to work on your behalf and who are skilled and educated to get the job done. Don‘t just hire people you like them, because if they cannot get the job done, you may need to fire them. Can they be bold enough to say “I don’t know how to do that and I am willing to learn”? Will they complement your skills and do the things you need to delegate to them? Can they be excited about your vision in your business and not have the desire to be the face of your business? You will want to have a whole set of hiring questions and scenarios to help you interview the prospects to find the right person for you. When you are clear of who you want to bring on board there are some great hiring agencies that can do the leg work and bring the best candidates for you that can get the job done.
#3 Define Company Roles Clearly
Make sure you take time to define the roles of each person you bring on board in your business. What is your role and what are the roles you need fulfilled to take your vision and turn it into a reality? Who does what and who is accountable to whom? It is not the goal to bring someone into your team and boss them around. It is your goal to bring someone into your team and show them what their role is and how they fit into your company’s future growth. Why are roles important? It sets the criteria in place for each person to know what is expected and what needs to be accomplished for their position. No toes getting stepped on and everyone knows what they need to do so they can go do it!
#4 Build a Diverse Team With Different Strengths
It would be pretty boring in business if everyone in your company had the same personality, same working drive or the same look. Creating a culture where you value the strengths of each person and everyone’s strengths are different is much more rewarding and can create a lot of ideas flowing in your business. Don’t try to be safe and get people just like you. You are not a boring business! Be willing to learn and share and value the differences with your team because those differences are what will truly help you accomplish your vision.
#5 Everyone Needs to Happily Fulfill the Customer’s Needs
Customer service is one of the most important pieces to staying in business long term. Therefore everyone on your team needs to have great customer service skills so they can fulfill the need of each of your clients. You may have to bring in an outside expert to train your whole team at once but it will be worth the cost because your clients will have an experience that they will share with other people. What do you want them to share about? Something that didn’t go well that was pushed under the rug or something that didn’t go well but was handled and it was handled happily. One of the important factors in fulfilling the customer’s needs is to give your team the authority to handle the issues as they arise. If they always have to wait for you to authorize them to do anything you and your customers will not be happy. Set a limit to what they can do without your being involved and anything above that limit have them reach out to you for authorization. Give them the authority to work on your behalf and everyone’s needs will be happily fulfilled.
#6 Hold People Capable and Accountable
When you bring people into your business you have to trust that you hired the right person. You asked the right questions and listened to find the right fit for your business. So trust yourself until you prove yourself wrong. With that being said, it is your turn to hold the people you hired as capable to do the job you hired them for. Stop trying to take back what you gave them to do just because you can do it faster or a better way. Set a deadline for them and let them show you what they can do. Then hold the accountable to do what they agreed to do and go get your own work done! You might be surprised to hear this but many times the people you hired can actually do things more efficiently and effective than you did them. That is really why you hired them to begin with right? My goal when hiring people is to find people who can do the task better and faster than I can do it. It might not happen right away but eventually if I give them the space to succeed then it happens. And there is another topic for another time on what to do when it is not working.
#7 Show Your Team Members That You Value Them
It can be difficult to show your team that you value them if you do not understand what they value. What motivates the people you work with? What motivates you? Sometimes they are two completely different answers. If you do not know what motivates them then it is likely they will not feel valued even if you are giving them things that you think are valuable.
Some people are motivated by a cause. (People will fly planes into a building for a cause they are passionate about!) A cause that may not have anything to do with your business but a team member would feel so valued if you donated to their favorite nonprofit it or volunteered for it. Walked in a relay or sponsored them to participate.
Some people are motivated by recognition. They want to hear you say they did a great job. They want other people to know that you liked or appreciated what they have done for you. This person might like to receive employee of the month, parking spot with their name on it or an announcement in your month meeting or newsletter. That is how they know they are valued on your team.
Some people are motivated by money. They want you to give them a bonus, a raise or commission from a sale they worked hard to help you get. They want to feel like they are being paid what they are worth.
It is easy to just give people money and think that is enough for them to feel valued in your business. It is not! Find out how your team members feel valued and then find ways to show them.
#8 Make Building A Team Enjoyable
Let me be clear, building a team to support you is a lot of work! But what if you looked at it like it was a fun game that makes you curious and rewards you in the end. So many people look at team building as a work instead of finding ways to make the investment of your time finding the right people a big payoff. Years ago (like 20 years) I bought a book called 1001 Ways to Reward Employees by Bob Nelson as I was looking for ways that I could connect with and show my team that they were important. That book is where I began looking at ways to make building a team enjoyable. You can laugh and cry and be part of their team just like they are part of your team. Make most of the time enjoyable so when the hard stuff happens they want to stick it out with you.
Here is an example: In 1998 we sold our business to a Fortune 500 Company. My husband and I became their employees and we were the branch managers in our area. A year later, they went bankrupt owing us quite a bit of money still from the purchase of our business and all the checks they had written to the employees four days before bounced like rubber balls! We scrambled around and spoke with all of the employees in our area and told them what was going on and that if they were willing to stay with us we would pay them and keep them employed. Because of how we treated them and valued them, every employee stayed with our company.
You are working hard in your business to build income and a reputation that can build the business of your dreams. Don’t mess it all up by being Mr. or Mrs. Bossy Pants and be someone who is just looking for laborers. Find people who fit in your business, train them, hold them capable and accountable, give them vision and have some fun in the process. You will make some mistakes along the way. In case you didn’t know it making mistakes is required in business. How else are you going to learn how to do things the right way if you aren’t willing to the risk of messing it up a little now and again?
Build a Team That Won’t Sink the Ship
7 Steps to Building the Team You Need to Start Your Business