Finding talent takes preparation

What are the values and priorities of your business?

Think back to when you started your company. What was the driving force in wanting to start the company? Maybe you had in mind creating an innovative product that would completely disrupt the market. Maybe you saw an opportunity to provide a service to other companies. When is the last time you thought back to that initial, creative spark that lighted the way for you to create this business?

Thinking back on your values and the priorities of the business are an essential part of your business’s success. And from a prep work standpoint, it’s important to articulate those ideas to your current staff and the talent you recruit into your business. The reasons you created the business and the direction you want it to go in the future set the tone and culture of your company. If you don’t say those things aloud and don’t include them in your external communications then no one knows your voice.

The first set of prep work for you is to write out the values you want for your business and the priorities you want your team to have.

ACTION – Outline values
What’s the reason your started your company?

Where are you today with fulfilling your original dream?

If your original dream has changed in the years you’ve been in business, how is it different?

What are some of the key words you think about when you think value?
Here are some examples to get you started: Innovation – Success – Differentiation – Domination

ACTION – Outline priorities
What are the goals you have for the business in the next year?

What are the goals you have for the business in the next 5 years?

What path are you heading down to meet these goals?

What’s the #1 priority you have for your business right now?

So you outlined your values and goals – now how do you use this to find the best talent?

Employees get to know you even before they’re employees. It happens even before they are candidates. People might get to know your company as customers, visitors, or through your network. They get an impression of you even before employment is a topic. When you develop your sales and marketing strategies you think about messaging, consistency and targeting an audience. The talent pipeline works the same way both before and after employment begins.

Let’s break it down into pieces.
How do you find candidates to join your company? Are there certain websites you tend to focus on with recruiting? Are there printed publications or industry associations that have brought talented people to your team?

If that’s the case – what does your company profile look like to an outsider who goes to those sites? Log onto those sites right now and check the links and the verbiage. If it’s outdated – update it now. Go ahead and do this right now, after all there’s no time like the present!

When you look at your company’s website, what is the first impression a candidate has about your company?

If you aren’t ready to update your entire website, maybe you should consider having a landing page created just for employment purposes. It can mirror your company page but it is geared to telling the employment story of your company, its culture and what makes people successful at your business. It could also capture information on candidates (like name, email, current job title) for future reference in your recruiting endeavors.

Landing pages are a much easier way to get an employment message across to candidates. You can work with a local web developer or a contractor on a site like Fiverr (www.Fiverr.com) or Upwork (www.Upwork.com).

Let’s talk about you.
What impression would a candidate get if they did some research on you? If you haven’t done a Google search or LinkedIn search on your personal profile you should do that very soon. It’s incredible the information that’s out there about each and every one of us. You have some control over the information – and sadly you don’t have control of other pieces of data. Go the sites that you have control over – LinkedIn, Glassdoor (to a certain degree), and your Google Business page. Make sure the information is updated and relevant for your business and your professional profile.

Let’s go inside the company.
Is your team prepared to be your recruiting advocacy group?
Your team knows more about the business than maybe even you do! They’re a great way to send the most realistic messages to candidates. They’re going to be advocates to bring in people who they want to work with and who make the team stronger. In order for them to be the best advocates for the recruiting effort of your company there is some information they need to be armed with.

Here’s a starting list for you to consider:
Do your team members about the financial health or growth vision of the company?
Do your team members know who’s been promoted in the last year?
Do your team members know how you view their performance and contributions to the business so they can share it with others?

These questions are some for you to start thinking about the employee’s view of the employment experience at your company. I like to call this the “employment life cycle” and sometimes I refer to it as the employee value proposition. It doesn’t matter what you call it. It matters if you’re putting thought and action into it.