Friday, June 11, 2010

One of the Biggest Problems

After ILEC bills, your biggest expense is probably labor (payroll). One of the biggest issues for my clients is Human Resources: How to Hire. (Especially Salespeople.) It isn't just about filling seats - that's what the ILEC does. It's about finding the right people who either have the right skills or can be taught the skills (if they have the right attitude).

Corporate Culture is this weird word that means fitting in to the vision and values of your organization. The owners hired people originally that they liked. Zappos has been able to scale that to $1B in revenue and Zappos CEO Tony wrote about it in Delivering Happiness (Amazon affiliate link). It was also the subject of another book titled the Cult of the Customer. You build (or destroy) the corporate culture with every hire. One prima donna can wreck an office.

That means you have to know your vision, your values and your value proposition that you want your employees to not only espouse but to also embrace. Of course, you have to clearly identify these concepts and integrate them into your business or at least reiterate them often enough that it isn't just a poster on the wall.

So you have to hire to grow. How do you do that? One way is to have your own employees find your new hires. They know who they want to work 8 to 10 hours every day with. There are many articles (like this one) about hiring practices. Bottom line: Hire Slow. Fire fast. The more steps to the hiring process the more likely you will get a candidate that wants to work for you. Map the process out too. Let more than a few employees meet the candidates, especially any women in your office as they have a better intuition than men.

If you need more help with this, give me a shout. For many of you, it's your people that make the difference, right? It's YOUR customer care that competes against the ILEC's customer service. IN the end it's your people. Hire Attitude.

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