Can Your New Team Members Be Coached?

In hiring new team members, one of the things you need to look for is: can they be coached?

Coaching will bring out the best in your team.  Your investment in this time will bring you rewards you cannot imagine.

Some of the first lessons I coach are about time and focus.

  • You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with. (If you are not spending time with people that want to be successful, you will be carrying an anchor.)
  • 15 minutes early is on time, on time is late and late is unacceptable. (This reminds team members that time is valuable: yours and mine. Additionally, it always take a few minutes to get your head in the game and transition from what you were last doing.)
  • First seek to understand then be understood. (Ask questions.  If you are the only one talking you are not learning or gaining clarity.)
  • Carry a journal with you at all times. You never know when someone is going to say something that is valuable.  Write it down. Take notes.
  • Give more than expected and someday you will receive more than you deserve. (People recognized when you are doing more than required, even when no one says anything.)

This is a start. While it might seem like most of these should already be understood, you will be surprised how many people need to hear this.

Set up a coaching schedule in your office.  Concentrate on the strengths that your team member already has and work to maximize them.  The rewards will be astonishing.

For more information, contact me at, kim@creating-a-buzz.com

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A Potential Candidate was Found. What Next?

Part VI – Continuing in my series of how my systems changed and how my process developed…

Finally!  We found a potential candidate, but in order to find out if we really have a good understanding of the candidate, we ask for references:

  • 2 previous employers
  • 2 previous clients
  • 2 previous team members

Finding Job CandidatesWe ask that they contact the references before they submit the names to us to let them know we will be calling.  When we call, we explain we want the candidate to thrive in the position we have here and just want to make sure that will be the case.

The first question we ask is: tell us 3-4 adjectives that describe the candidate.  This really gives us an idea of the impression this person left at their last position.  In my experience, we found that the adjectives were very much in line with hungry, humble and smart when it is the right person.

By asking for two references in each category it increases our chances of talking to at least one.

Then, lastly, we ask for a background check and we do a social media check.

After all this is said and done, we will make an offer.

As a small business, it is imperative that we continue to find great team members.  However, as an entrepreneur, we never truly have a process for hiring.  The key is to have clarity about what you need.  Having a job description and qualities that create a successful team member will significantly cut down on the time you will need to spend looking, interviewing and hiring.

Please let me know if you need assistance with creating your process.  You may contact me via Email: kim@creating-a-buzz.com or by Phone: (727) 919-1429

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Team Interview

Part IV – Team Members…Developing Systems to Find the Best!

The next step in the process is the team interview.  We totally dispensed with the phone interview, as someone had seen the person in action.  They had reached out for the opportunity, not because they had to but because they wanted to.

Using Patrick Lencioni’s book “The Ideal Team Member,” we developed questions to identify the three characteristics he described: Hungry, Humble and Smart.

After each interview, the team would debrief to see if the candidate met the criteria.  If Creating a Buzzthere was a category that we felt unsure of, the next interview would really focus on those questions that would help us determine the fit. If they were not a fit, we would send an email thanking them for their time.

The next interview would be held in an offsite location.  I chose a busy restaurant, early in the morning to see how the person handled the pressure of an interview in a chaotic location. We would again ask questions using the three topics but really focused on an area that the team was not clear on.

As part of this offsite interview, I would also share my job description.  It is the only job description I have, even though I have 4 different positions in my office. (See My Job Description)

Going through this process significantly reduced the amount of time we spent to find our next candidate.  It also helped us with clarity around what we were really looking for.

Referrals> interview questions with specific focus on traits> on and off site interviews> References.

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Team Members…Developing Systems to Find the Best!

How do you find the best team members in a sea of mediocrity?

Team MembersOver the last few years, I have tried to develop a system to find new team members.  Originally, I used a resume aggregator to pull resumes fitting my job posting.  I would then either contact them or they would contact me.  I would look at the resume again and determine if a phone interview should be done – then group interviews, testing and final interview and job offer.

This was a very cost-prohibited process.  Being a small business, this took a large commitment of time from both me and my team.  Many times, I would schedule the interview and the person would not answer the phone or show up.  BIG TIME WASTER, especially when my team was scheduled to do group interviews.

Then, even after going through the process of reviewing many resumes, scheduling phone interviews and group interviews, and finally making an offer to only have the  person be fired in about five days, leave after four days or last eight months and then just not show up.  I was baffled how this could happen.  I offered a competitive wage, benefits, friendly and positive place to work and team members that were helpful and motivated.  What was going wrong????

I needed inspiration! I needed to understand Millennials. I needed a new process.

I will tell you in the next few blog posts what I did, how my system changed and how the process developed.

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