When you're the owner of a local small business, the idea of hiring employees is likely an even mix of excitement and anxiety. The employees you hire represent the face of your business, and when you're a small business one bad employee can seriously impact your reputation. This is why it's so important you not only hire employees but ones that align with your business goals and will help your business to grow.
In a "normal world" small business owners experience difficulty hiring top employees, and on the heels of a global pandemic, many local businesses are struggling even more. Job openings are increasing to staggering amounts, with fewer individuals applying for the positions, which can be for several reasons like vaccination and continued fear of COVID-19. But what can you do to attract top talent for your small business?
- Explain the Impact of Working for Your Business- By working for a big box retailer, many understand that they're supporting the larger corporate business, and not the local community. Nowadays many individuals understand the impact of supporting local small businesses but take it even further by explaining the impact of your business on the local economy. Have you funded a local revival project? Tell your prospective employees about it. No matter what you do, make sure your prospective employees understand that your business supports the local community while also strengthening the local economy.
- Explain the Opportunity- Small businesses can be much more flexible when it comes to the positions they offer, and allowing prospective employees to craft what their jobs will be, they'll feel more in control of the opportunity they're accepting. Yes, certain tasks need to be completed by the individual you're hiring, but encourage them to be inspired by the job, and share any growth opportunities. By doing this, you'll not only allow them to feel valuable in the company but also allow them to feel that you care for their individual growth.
- Offer Flexible Schedules- You need to have all shifts covered, but its also important to show your prospective employees that you understand they're humans, with their own lives outside of work. Work-life balance is key, as you don't want your employees to feel taken advantage of. By offering flexible hours and schedules, your employees will feel they have a say in when they can work, which may make your small business more attractive to them than other businesses. By depicting yourself as approachable, understanding, and human, your employees will feel more comfortable working for your business with less fear of taking a day off, thus improving productivity.
- Build a Team- By creating a team environment where your employees work hard and celebrate wins in the business, you'll create an environment where your employees will be excited to come to work. It's important that when building a team, you're not creating a hostile and toxic environment that sets unrealistic expectations, but rather employees are rewarded for their hard work and impact on the business. By creating a team for your local business, you're creating a strong workforce that's excited to work together to help your business grow.
- Celebrate Wins with Perks- We understand that the current size or success of your local business may not allow much budget for employee perks, but its important that as you grow, your employees feel as though they're appreciated and properly rewarded for their help in the growth. You can do this by offering yearly bonuses for employees that aided in the growth and represented the business well by working hard. As a local business, you can also work with other businesses in your community to offer coupons or gift certificates to your employees, further stimulating the local economy.
Working for a small local business gives employees access to all levels of management, making work more inspiring while cultivating an environment of ideas and innovation. With this type of environment, your employees will feel more motivated as they'll directly feel the wins the business feels. Don't be afraid to sell the benefits of working for your business when interviewing prospective employees, as they should understand that the work they do isn't only work, but vital to the growth of the business they themselves can help grow.