How to Build Your Own Rockstar Team
Business is booming and your company is ready for growth! WOO-HOO! As you begin the hiring process, you may wonder: how can I weed out my list of applicants to find the ideal candidate for the job? Applicants may look GREAT on paper, but I have some tips on how to narrow down the top contenders who are most likely to jive with your crew.
- Evaluate your company culture.
- Identify the position for which you’re hiring and write a job description.
- Determine your application process.
- Nail down your candidate list.
- Make an offer.
Create Your Company Culture
At my company, Raney Day Design, I want my employees to be able to work in a place where they are excited to show up! A recent Oxford University study suggests happy workers are 13% MORE productive. That’s why it’s so critical to establish a positive company culture. The more emphasis you place on the people and the environment, the more cohesive the team. Hands-down.
Questions to consider when identifying company culture:
- What is the vibe of your company (whether in-person or online)?
- What is your vision and mission?
- What are the core values that guide your company?
- How do you communicate and collaborate with one another?
- What behaviors and attitudes are encouraged and rewarded?
- How does your company handle conflict, decision-making and problem-solving?
- How do you support employee growth, work-life balance, and employee well-being?
You can check out our culture and our value statements on the Raney Day Design “about” page here.
Write Your Job Description
Once you’ve identified your culture, your next step is to write the job description. Take a look at your organizational chart, as well as the responsibilities and processes that feed into the roles. Need help putting one together? Check out this free SmartDraw Organizational Chart Template.
At Raney Day Design, we write our job descriptions based on the person, not the position. I know that sounds BONKERS, but it’s very important for us. About 90% of our applicants look AMAZING on paper. They can perform the job well, but I want to know if they fit into the culture that we’ve built.
So as you write your job description, consider the traits you’d ideally want your candidate to have. What bonus strengths and skills are you looking for? What experience should they have? I also provide reasons why the candidate should choose us. For example: I always hype up the fact that our office is completely virtual, our team is awesome, the work is fun, the hours are flexible and the stress is fairly low. In today’s market, you’ll find more people working from home, and prospective employees feel empowered to find positions that work for them and their families. You’ll want to make your company look appealing.
Now, notice I’m always directing attention to the individual, not the masses. We want them to feel special. We want them to feel seen. And that’s what matters in our culture: that we are all humans first. We are looking to bring our new team member on board as soon as possible, but we’ll spend the necessary time to find the best fit, both in abilities and culturally.
Here’s an example of wording from a recent job posting at Raney Day Design for an Online Business Manager / Executive Administrative position:
“someone who can energetically keep up with our founder and CEO, an ambitious go-getter who values communication and human kindness. Likes to smash goals and gets excited to see our clients and genuinely happy.“
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11 Steps for Writing an Effective Job Description
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I was looking for someone dependable who could work alongside me and handle my
business first baby with care. Raney Day Design is my first, true, successful business. I have to ensure that the right person is going to handle my business with care – and that includes our clients. That’s why I chose words and phrases like ENERGETICALLY, AMBITIOUS, HUMAN KINDNESS, SMASH GOALS. Those are all important characteristics to me. You also may want to suggest who may NOT be suited for the job. Personally, I don’t want any Negative Nancies. I strive for that positive juice to keep our company sweet.
The Application Process
You’ve created a workplace culture. ✔️
You’ve perfected a job description. ✔️
Next up? Let’s reel in some job applicants!
The job application process serves as an initial screening tool, so it should provide you with sufficient information to assess a candidate’s suitability for the position.
Hint: Use Google Forms for recruitment. The form comes with a job application template that helps you create a recruitment form and list specific questions about the position for which you’re hiring, such as:
- familiarity with company software
It’s also wise to ask about their hobbies and interests. I’m a recovering workaholic, so I know it’s important that we have balance in our lives. It’s one of our core values at Raney Day Design. And I want to know that a potential team member has a life outside of work. I also request a copy of their portfolio, resume and a link to their LinkedIn profile.
IMPORTANT: Ensure that your questions are relevant to the role and comply with local labor laws and regulations. Be mindful of avoiding discriminatory or biased questions that could violate equal employment opportunity guidelines.
Another suggestion is to give the candidate a PAID pre-employment test to assess their skills. This trial-run is becoming a growing practice among employers. For example, say I wanted to hire a web developer. I’d create a staging site and an error and give them a couple hours to see how they’d handle the situation, come up with a solution and fix the problem. This allows me to see how the candidate would follow instructions, capture information and communicate back to our team.
Choosing the Best of the Bunch
You’ve narrowed your candidate list to two or three contenders – good job! So how do you know which person is best-suited for your position? It’s pop quiz time!
We send a personality test to each candidate using the 16 Personalities site and it helps us decipher whether the candidate is a good fit for our team. It asks questions regarding interests, organizational skills, handling mistakes and stress, creativity and so much more.
Another trick? This one will take you back to middle school days. In the job description, I ask potential applicants to include the phrase “I’m The One” in the subject line of their email. It proves to me they can follow instructions and that they care enough to thoroughly read about my company before applying. Pretty clever, huh?
One more idea that will help you make your decision is to ask candidates to submit a video explaining why they’re the perfect fit for the job and how they plan to rock the position!
This is purely for us to get a sense of their personality. Every recent hire at Raney Day Design has submitted a video. They took the extra step to show their personality. They wanted the job badly enough – and that matters.
The Offer is on the Table
Once you’ve made your choice, it’s time to send out a job offer. Here’s what that looks like:
- Clearly state all details, including the position title, department, start date and work location.
- Mention salary, benefits and other compensation details.
- Outline key job responsibilities.
- Specify a response deadline.
- Include any conditions or contingencies that must be fulfilled before the offer is finalized, such as a background or reference check.
Hopefully, these tips help you find your next all-star employee. You can always schedule a call to learn more about hiring the right people for your business.