- Hire people who share your values and make sure they understand that they can reach their goals by helping you and your company reach its goals;
- Look for people who are flexible, adaptable, willing to take risks, innovative, comfortable with change, and want to keep learning. They are the people who will propel your company’s growth;
- Make sure that you hire self-motivated people. Don’t hire anyone – or keep anyone – that you have to motivate;
- If you’re trying to grow, hire people who will take your company to the next level, rather than replacing the person who just left or filling a current position that’s open;
- Do not hire people who are clones of you or expect everyone to do it your way. Value diversity, and learn to manage different types of people;
- Hire to your weakness. If you are the visionary, make sure you hire some people who excel in the day-to-day work. If accounting is not a skill, hire a CFO and then have an outside audit conducted on a regular basis;
- If you’re not good at recruiting and don’t know what to look for, hire people who know more than you do to help, or use a recruiting firm to find good candidates;
- Provide guidelines that describe the parameters within which people can operate, then let them exercise their creativity, apply their expertise, and hold them accountable for achieving results;
- Set goals, measure progress, and reward those that perform. Spend more time with your high achievers than your low performers;
- Learn to delegate, but not abdicate. Do not hire someone or promote someone, then walk away and expect him or her to perform well. Work with them, at successively higher level of delegation, until you are satisfied the person is ready and able to take on the full responsibility of the job.
From Lessons from the Edge (Survival Skills for Starting and Growing A Company), by Jana Matthews and Jeff Dennis, Copyright 2003 Oxford University Press.