One thing that I think all entrepreneurs struggle with at some point is building a team and hiring contractors or employees that they can trust. I’ve been super lucky to find stellar talent to help me with all aspects of my business, but even more than luck, I’ve recently gotten hiring down to a system. And you KNOW I love a good system.
In fact, this system is so efficient that I’ve been able to hire my last three employees — my project manager, podcast producer, and content writer — in less than a week. Even crazier? I actually found and hired the writer within not just 7 days, but in 48 hours.
This system is solid, and I think you’ll find a lot of value in using it if and when you’re ready to hire, too. So let’s get into the exact formula I use to bring on brilliant, caring, and trustworthy team members that help me elevate my business to the next level!
Why I use LinkedIn to hire new employees
So, when I’m bringing on a new team member, I always turn to LinkedIn to create the job post. It eliminates so many steps because I just draft and publish the role I’m seeking, and there’s no application or extensive cover letter reviewing process (halle-freakin’-lujah).
Applicants literally submit their own LinkedIn profiles, which allows me to scan their qualifications easily and search for keywords based on past experience. I could search podcast producer, project manager, and conversion copywriter for my three most recent hires and see which applicants actually had the background to back up what I needed in a hire.
There’s no BS-ing their way through qualifications on a resume and cover letter (and no hours upon hours of me having to read through those, either). Looking through public LinkedIn profiles assured me that their experience was legit, and I could pick and choose based on those metrics rather than spending a ton of time weeding through unnecessary or overinflated details.
My approach to vetting applicants + 5 questions I always ask
I’m a fast decision maker and a pretty laidback hirer because I go on two main things that I know I can trust: their experience and our connection. So once I take a look at applicants’ backgrounds on LinkedIn, it’s fairly easy to pick my top 5 to 10 favorites based on their qualifications and keywords I search.
I start conversations with each of them in the messages right on LinkedIn just to get to know them a little better. The questions I always make sure to ask include:
1. What do you do currently?
2. What is your availability?
3. What excites you about the JK brand?
4. What are some gaps you think we could fill better?
5. If you were to contribute something to the business today, what comes to mind?
It’s a casual conversation just to vet their interest, ideas, and capacity to take on what I need. This also allows me to get a quick feel for their personality and responsiveness, which are important to me in building a team. I want people on my team who are invested in the forward motion of the brand and who I like to be around, because duh! That makes work all the more fun.
After that, I usually have a gut-feeling of who would be the best fit and hop on the phone for a little deeper dig into conversation. I wouldn’t necessarily call it an interview even, because it’s more just to see how well we vibe together. I already know they CAN do the job based on their experience — it’s more to feel out whether I want them in the position, which I can generally decipher pretty quickly.
With my last 3 hires, all of this has happened and culminated with an accepted offer in fewer than 7 days! It might seem too fast to some people, but LinkedIn eliminates a bunch of steps and overwhelm, and allows me to narrow down the options based off of experience and then hone into their personalities.
What makes a strong job post to attract top talent?
Now, when it comes to attracting the best of the best, you need to have a quality job post. That doesn’t mean it needs to be super complicated or lengthy, but it should encapsulate your brand and your dream team member to a T.
Here are a few things to keep in mind when drafting a captivating job post:
— Be detailed about the position. Talk about the responsibilities, what the weekly workload will look like, and the goal of the role. Be totally upfront and real about your expectations so applicants know whether they’ll have the bandwidth and experience to take it on.
— Share with authenticity. Just like a social media post or landing page for your biz, you want the job post to show the personality of your brand and what you are all about. Share the vision for your business and how you think the right person in this position will help elevate the brand to get there.
— Be clear about WHO you want. I didn’t just want any writer — I wanted a conversion copywriter who knew how to craft a call to action that drew in the reader. I didn’t just want a project manager — I wanted a positive go-getter who could wrangle the many moving parts within my business. Describe your perfect person for this role, and odds are, you’ll attract them!
The thing I think so many people get stumped on with hiring is deciding when and who to hire. But if you’re finding yourself burning the candle at both ends or consistently working on tasks you don’t like or aren’t good at, it’s time to outsource, my friend.
And, it doesn’t need to be complicated. Simplify it by getting a clear, detailed job post up — and stat — and then vet your people based mainly on qualifications and a little bit of gut intuition, too. I have no doubt you’ll get a knockout team in place that’ll help you grow to the next level. And then the next, and the next, and the next.