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Pru Chapman
OC Founder + Head Hustler

Pru Chapman is the Founder + Head Hustler at Owners Collective, a dedicated digital community and global online resource hub for early-stage entrepreneurs. Pru gets giddy supporting business owners to create meaningful, sustainable + profitable business. She loves nothing more than bulletproof coffee, her pooch Maverick, and an empty mountain hiking trail.

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Latest One Wild Ride Podcast:
Generating New Ideas: How to Inspire Innovation and Lead Creative Teams with Nicole Velik

This week we’re talking all about building a team, and specifically the Top 5 Mistakes people make when hiring.


So here’s a little truthbomb to kick us off, in that if you want to grow your revenue, your impact, your freedom and your independence from your business, it is going to involve building your team.  


Now when you’re in the first few years of business hiring a team sounds like incredibly scary stuff. I mean once you bring on another human, you’re not only responsible for paying yourself and all of the business expenses, but also for holding up someone else’s salary, which they’re reliant on for paying their rent, bill’s and supporting their family.


Something else that scares early-stage entrepreneurs about hiring is that many of them have come out of corporate environments, and the last thing that they want to create around them is that boring old 9-5am slog – total snoresvill!


And the third point of resistance – and the biggest in my opinion that I often come up against in the entrepreneurs that I mentor is that they have the belief that if they keep things small, and keep doing everything themselves, then it maintains their freedom because they can close it down and walk away at any time.


BUT, and this is a big but…


This belief of having freedom when you’re doing it all yourself is a total myth.  Why? Because when it’s just you you’re the one that has to keep all the wheels turning all the time. If you’re not driving this business beast, it’s not going anywhere – and there’s no freedom in that at all.


Whereas once you start to bring on a team you have more brains, more energy, more creativity on board. And if you truly do want to pack up your family and head on a 3 months campervan trip around Aus, there are people in place to keep the wheels turning and the business banking going while you’re away.


So bringing on a team, the right team, in the right way can truly liberate you from your business.


But, you’ll notice that I said the ‘right way’ there, because there are many wrong ways to bring on team, and that’s what we’re diving into today.

So here we go, the Top 7 Mistakes People Make When Hiring


1. Doing it too slow
Most businesses hit a scaling point at about 12-18 months. This is the point that I like to call ‘Scale or Die’.  Sounds dramatic, but the truth is, once you’ve been in business for this amount of time your offering has usually grown, as has your client base, your return clients, and overall the expectations that are on you.  At this point if you don’t hire you’ll become overwhelmed, and too deep in ‘the work’ to scale moving forward, simply because you’re just too busy.  You’ll spin into a vortex and before you know it you’ll resent your business and eventually quit.  To many businesses fall prey to this vortex, so don’t hire too slow. Once you’ve got the work/sales coming in and the cashflow to support it, bring on some support asap.


2. Doing it too fast
Yep, this sounds totally counterintuitive to my previous point, but what I’m referring to here is rushing the hiring process, if there’s a process at all.  You really need to spend the time to hire the right person. The time invested into getting the right person on board will pay absolute dividends in the speed at which you’ll be able to train them and the retention of them in the business.


3. No structure
I can’t count how many times I’ve walked into a business and it’s a gong show for organisation. The reason this is usually the case is that the Founder has been overwhelmed, and reached for the first support person they can find (typically an ill qualified friend) and given them a total mix mash of a role. This doesn’t work. It might solve a short term problem, but it provides no clear pathway for team growth.


4. Not being clear on roles and responsibility
This flows on directly from the last point. Typically if people haven’t thought out the business structure of roles, then they also haven’t given too much attention to clearly outlining roles and responsibilities. This is a disaster, mostly because your new hire has unclear direction about what they’re meant to be doing and how they’re meant to be doing it. Putting together a proper Roles & Responsibilities document takes time and consideration from the Founder and it should fit within the organisational chart of the business once built in its entirety.  Yes that sounds like a big job, but no-one can expect their new hire to do a killer job if they don’t have a very clear outline of what that is.


5. No KPIs
Here’s the truth: everyone wants to do a great job, and KPI’s are exactly how your new hire knows how to do that. Call them Milestones/KPIs/goals, whatever floats your boat, but essentially these little metrics tell your new hire where the goal posts are, and how they’re going to excel. KPI’s are great for you, your new hire, and for the business itself!


BONUS : Shitty onboarding process
So you’ve taken the time to get the right person, set them up with a clear role and defined milestones, don’t let yourself down with a shitty onboarding process. A bad onboarding process is unplanned, rushed, and ‘throw them in the deep end style’. It’s lazy, frightening for your new hire, and really just says that you’re disorganised and not prioritising them coming into your business. On the contrary, a well thought out onboarding process is planned, structured, and builds upon itself to gradually build your new hire’s capacity and confidence into their new role. 

So there you have it folks, Top 5 (cheeky six) Mistakes People Make When Hiring


Now building thriving teams is a real passion of mine, so if you enjoyed this episode be sure to tune in next week where I’ll be talking through how to Authentically Engage Your Team. We’re going to be coming at it from a deep psychology approach, which is my passion and my jam.


I hope you’ve enjoyed this podcast, and if you have and of course if you have any extra questions about hiring, head over to our instagram @ownerscollective and I’m happy to answer your burning questions there.


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