How to Hire the Right Employees

Are you planning to hire new employees for your franchise? How are you going to do it?

Chances are you are starting by looking at the job description for the position you are trying to fill. Maybe you are using one that you developed internally, or one that you got from your franchise company.

That is a logical place to start but remember that most regular job descriptions are little more than a list of tasks that state that the person who does a particular job “does this, and this, and this, and this.” But as every franchise owner knows, there is more to any job than simply what an employee does.

Every job also requires skills and attributes that might not be outlined in the job description. If you sit back and really think about what they are, you will discover that they are more important to think about than tasks. If you take time to consider what you need your new employee to be, you could decide that your idea candidate for the job needs to . . .

  • Be a really good listener

  • Excel as a speaker or presenter

  • Have the ability to motivate people

  • Be able to handle routine frustrations in a levelheaded way

  • Look at numbers and understand not only how they add up, but what they imply

When you add those extra factors to a list of tasks, you develop a comprehensive role overview, which much more useful than a job description. It will equip you to hire a new employee who will exceed your expectations.

Think About Training Too

Here is a critically important question to ask . . .

What is your ability to train new hires?

Companies that have the ability to train new employees enjoy a great advantage. They can hire high-potential people and train them to become top performers. In contrast, companies that lack training fall into the pattern of hiring employees who have done similar jobs in the past. Those people might be good. But without training, they have a smaller chance of becoming great.

Without training, other problems arise too . . .

  • New hires start without knowing how to perform at the highest level

  • They learn by trial and error, which actually means making mistakes

  • They frustrate other members of their team, who have to pick up the slack while they learn

Add Behavioral Role Testing to the Process

You can easily find tests that let you define the traits you need in people who are doing the job you are seeking to fill, then to benchmark your applicants against them. To find them search online for “behavioral assessment tests.”

Look for Applicants Who are Coachable and Eager to Learn

The best hires are eager to master their new jobs – who you know will soak up knowledge like sponges and like to get input and coaching. To screen for this trait, look for applicants who enthusiastically ask a lot of questions about the job. Also ask, “What kind of training did you have on your previous job, was it good, and what did you learn from it?” (Do they talk about prior training enthusiastically or negatively?) Finally, call references and ask how eager the applicant was to learn when working prior jobs.

And Be Sure to Hire People who Have Great, Positive Attitudes

Attitude is the most important factor to consider when you are hiring. People with negative attitudes act like rotten apples - they do irreparable harm to everyone around them and spoil their performance. Over time, the presence of one or two negative people can do more damage a company that people think possible.

But the opposite is also true, because just one person who has a positive and energetic attitude can do more to help a company than anyone thought possible. A positive attitude, like a negative one, is infectious - it spreads from person to person. The range of benefits is nothing short of amazing. Employees are more productive in positive companies. They are less likely to leave. They reinforce your brand, influence customers to buy more, and pay you back in an amazing variety of ways.

How to you hire people with great attitudes? One way is to trust your impression of the candidates you screen. Another is to ask an interview question like, “Can you tell me about a problem you faced on your last job?” and evaluate the attitude the applicant displays when answering. Does he or she seem put-upon, frustrated, angry or victimized by the problem? Or does he or she seem upbeat and eager to talk about the solution?

Also, be sure to check references diligently, and to ask deeper questions about the kind of attitude the applicant displayed in previous jobs. Is the applicant someone you really want to have on your team, or do you have reservations? Remember that it is always easier to hire the right person than to hire the wrong person and replace him.

Evan Hackel is a 35-year franchising veteran as both a franchisor and franchisee. He is CEO of Tortal Training, a leading training development company in Charlotte, North Carolina, and Principal and Founder of Ingage Consulting in Woburn, Massachusetts. Evan is the host of Training Unleashed and author of Ingaging Leadership. Evan speaks on Seeking Excellence, Better Together, Ingaging Leadership and Attitude is Everything. To hire Evan as a speaker, visit www.evanspeaksfranchising.com. Follow @ehackel.