Asoka is an Independent Finance Director and Management Consultant based in London. He works with growing companies as their part time Finance Director and is the Founder of AKCA Consulting, which helps companies improve their financial health.
Hiring the right people for your top team is always challenging.
If you are an entrepreneur in an early stage business, you probably can’t afford a head hunter or agency. So its up to you and if you get it right, the company will prosper and if you get it wrong, you will damage the company and go through a lot of wasted effort and stress.
So how do you make sure you recruit the right people?
Related Article: 5 Signs That You Have to hire a Finance Director/CFO
1. Make the time to write a job description & person spec
You have to make the time to get this right. Preparation is everything and like a Business Plan, giving some thought to what you need is critical. Even if you have the funds to hire a head hunter, spending some time in preparing a detailed job description and person specification will be invaluable. Start with the key tasks and responsibilities you want done and the key objectives the person would have to achieve – so having a Business Plan helps. Note what sort of person you would envisage doing this job and what qualifications they should have. The more detailed you can put down the better.
Make sure you know what you want and pay well to get it.
2. Don’t be cheap
Don’t be cheap, ensure you get the pay package right. Do some research and there are online salary surveys that are published to give you guidance. You can also enquire about relevant pay packages from your contacts – accountant, lawyer or other professionals you work with. Whatever you do, don’t ‘lowball’ this figure since paying what someone is worth will be worth every penny in the long-term. Be prepared to pay over the average salary for the ‘right’ person. By the way, this goes for all staff you hire and not just the top team. There’s no point in the top team being motivated only to be negated by a lot of staff thinking the company is cheap.
3. Make sure it’s a partnership
One of the key questions to ask is ‘what are your goals‘? Once they have stated their goals and dreams, you should be able to convince them of achieving these by working with you to achieve your company objectives. Hiring anyone in your business is about a partnership of what both want to achieve. If people think that all they are doing is helping you achieve your goal, that is not going to motivate them let alone join you in the journey. If it’s a real partnership then it’s win/win for both and you will create a successful business. If they don’t achieve their goals, you won’t achieve yours.
4. Get a second opinion
If you are not hiring a head hunter then it is important that you get a second opinion on your version of the job description and person spec and you should ask your mentor if you have one. If you do have a mentor, it’s ideal that they also interview the shortlisted people you think can do the job.
5. Don’t expect it to be fast or to get the perfect person
Recruitment is a slow process and there is always a balance between waiting to get the person you think is right and making a decision on the choices you have. After all none of us are perfect and what matters is that you can work as a team and produce the results. If you hire directly, it’s worth asking for recommendations before you start advertising online.
Take your time in recruiting and when you put the right team together you will get amazing results.