Successful Staffing Strategies

If you’re a sole proprietor who can’t do everything on your own anymore, congratulations! This means you’re beginning to outgrow your abilities – and growth is good. Now may be the time to consider hiring administrative or sales help.

If you want to focus your time on selling and opening up new business opportunities, you need assistance with time-consuming administrative tasks. Managing orders, talking to suppliers, tracking deliveries, ensuring customer satisfaction and billing clients are some of the tasks you can delegate to a new administrative employee.

If you’re an organizational whiz, you should look for a salesperson or two to help grow your business. You’ll handle the admin tasks while the sales rep, typically an independent contractor working on commission, finds new clients. No matter the role you need to fill, follow these tips to find the best additions to your staff.

1. Consider colleges.
For your first administrative hire, consider an intern from a local college. This is a great way to locate dedicated workers willing to take lower rates than those who’ve already been in the workforce. For your first sales rep, many distributors like to hire a recent college grad they can train and polish right from the start of their career. If you follow this strategy, have a solid training program in place and some low-maintenance clients the new hire can work with initially.

2. Ask probing questions.
During the interview, ask questions that help you ascertain whether the candidate can actually help your company. Say something like: “Tell me about a time when you’ve had to act as a project manager,” or “Can you give me an example of a time when you successfully multitasked?”

3. Talk to their references.
Even if they’re the candidate’s friends or volleyball coach, you can glean interesting information about job candidates from their references. Be sure to ask about the candidate’s strengths and weaknesses – these responses can be more revealing than when the candidates talk about themselves.