What is a small business team? What is the difference between the team that you create for your company and those you have worked with within large or corporate settings?
#1. Support is essential
Support is the most important thing when you are building your small business team. Not skills. Not experience. Support is more important than knowledge. Let’s repeat that: You need support.
You are the one who has your neck on the line at the end of it all. You are the one who made the investment, the promises and the commitments. To deliver, you must be consistent and effective; you will need support.
Many business owners feel tempted to hire staff members with specific skills and specialized knowledge. These skills are essential. Remember that this is your business and the entire shootin’ match depends upon you. While you may be admiring the person with the best technical skills or the most impressive sales record, consider the two of them working side-by on a project. Ask yourself: “Will this person really be able to support me like it needs to?”
#2. You want people who share your values and beliefs.
This is essential to keep your mind sane. In large businesses, this isn’t really considered – you choose who you have on your team, and HR usually hires them. It’s essential to have people in your small business who “get” you. This is what you need to feel supported (see #1). Your team must understand you.
You can make a list of your personality traits, values and philosophies. Your team might not share all of them, but it will be easier to work with people who do. Do you want to work with people who can be patient and open to your unique personality? It’s on your to-do list. Do you think it is more important than the work being done according to your standards or that it is done at a specific time? It may be vital that you and your new hire work closely together if you are looking to hire someone. It is essential to consider who you are most comfortable working with. (Of course, you can’t discriminate against someone based on religion, race or disability, but that wouldn’t be fair.
Bottom line: People are people. Depending on how closely you work with them, it’s essential to feel like they’re part of your “team.” To be able to begin to understand each other, you’ll need to establish a rapport with them. Remember Murphy Brown’s house painters? Murphy had Eldin as a part of his team. He wasn’t a typical employee, but he was an integral part of Murphy’s team. You must think of Eldin as a part of your team. They should be people who can support and complement your values and personality.
Marcia Hoeck is a consultant who teaches entrepreneurs how to create businesses that are self-sufficient.