Building out our team has been one of the biggest challenges of having our own business. Between Paul’s Type A personality and my extremely specific personality it can be super hard to find the right fit. I will say, though, that once you find the right people for the job, it is one of the most rewarding feelings as a business owner. I love nothing more than feeling at ease that my companies are surrounded by passionate, hard-working, down-for-anything people! It also helps that we all get along and genuinely enjoy each other’s company (at least I think they enjoy spending their days with us lol).
Hiring can be such a pain point in a business because it’s not only difficult to find the RIGHT people, you then have to spend the time to train them, trust them, and finally relinquish control. If all works out, great. If not, then you’re back to square one with tons of wasted time and efforts. Not an ideal situation, which is why we do multiple rounds of interviews to really ensure that person is IT.
When I was a teenager I had a retail job that you’d think was my lifelong dream the way I treated my position there. I was a “floor girl” aka the person who cleaned up after customers and organized the back stock room. First of all, we all know how die-hard I am about organization, so I did not find this beneath me or boring. I loved it, actually. But aside from my personal love of all things tidy, I put all my efforts into making that back room flawless to prove myself. I didn’t waste my time trying to show that I could easily be a sales girl like everyone else (& make more money), I first showed my abilities and competency in order to demonstrate that I know how to be dependable. Obviously the goal was to eventually get promoted, but you can’t just jump ahead and skip the grunt work.
I can only speak to my experiences and my companies, but I personally feel like once you’ve proven yourself in a role that you will eventually be identified as an asset and rewarded. Whether that’s in a job promotion, raise, or bonus, it’s something you earn. That is how we operate over here. We all work hard and if you make the cut and we see that, we love nothing more than to shower our employees with well deserved rewards.
Anyway, back to what I look for when hiring.
+ Initiative – I don’t do well micromanaging others and it’s just not my personality. I will not hold your hand. Happy to answer questions, but don’t expect me to babysit you. If you see something needs to get done, do it. Don’t wait to be asked to do it.
+ Motivation – I like to be surrounded by self motivated people. I want you to feel excited about working with me and treat the business like it’s your own. Take pride in your work and give it 100%.
+ Good Attitude – We are still a very young company with a small team. When it comes to busy times like photo shoots, launches, events, send-outs, etc. it’s all hands on deck. If you’re not down to get your hands dirty (metaphorically & literally) then it will not work. I look for people who will have a positive attitude through the fun times and the not-so glamorous times.
+ Collaborative – Even though it’s my brand, I very much value the opinions of our team members. I want to hear your honest thoughts, feedback, opinions, & ideas. I don’t want to be surrounded by “yes” people, I want real opinions.
+ Work Hard Play Hard Energy – Yes, we love to f*ck around, drink rosé, and have a good time but we also work our asses off. The priorities must be aligned.
+ Career Oriented – This might seem like an obvious one since we are talking about applying for jobs, but what I mean is I like hiring people who are looking to grow with the company. We personally feel it makes the most sense to hire and promote from within the company since we have a sense of their work ethic, attitude, qualifications, etc. So I always like to hire people who are looking for a long-term position and see the potential of a future with us.
+ Organized – I believe everyone has their own process so I never judge an organized chaos situation, but I do require a level of organization that can be followed by others. Meaning, how you want to execute your job is up to you, but I need to be aware of your progress. We use a program called Asana in our office that keeps all projects organized, with checklists and assignments for different people. This way I can track the status of stuff but you are free to do your job however works for you.
You might notice that I didn’t list experience as something I pay close attention to. While it’s definitely a requirement for certain positions, I don’t always go with the most experienced person when hiring. Sometimes the right attitude mixed with someone who is a fast learner is the perfect combination. I honestly value common sense over an education sometimes – just depends on the position.
Okay, now that I’ve just laid out everything I am personally looking for when hiring, hopefully all future candidates who apply read this to save us all time 😉