How to Attract and Retain Top Talent as You Grow

We are firm believers in a people-first mentality. We all have ideas about how we want to scale and grow, but without the right talent at the right time in your company, you might start going off in some wonky directions. It’s really important to have a clear understanding of what that means.

1. Develop a Strong Brand.

Having a strong brand and some visibility really does mean you’re big on social, not only for your business but also personally. You’re developing some thought leadership and the people in your space are starting to recognize who you are. The more that you and your brand have visibility, the easier it’s going to be for people to find you, and there is nothing better than getting an email from someone who’s eager to work with you. I love that, I love getting those emails and I imagine you will as well.

When you start to build up your thought leadership and get more visibility, you’re going to just start to attract these people.

2. Maintain a List of Roles You’d Like to Fill.

Always keep a list of the people you want to be hiring. You may want to have some dates on there or, “If then” statements. “I’d love to hire an X person when this happens” or, “I’d love to hire this type of role in X number of months.” Keep a list of personnel and do scenario planning. This kind of scenario planning is amazing because it allows you, when you meet the right person, to say, “Oh, I think I know where I’m going to put you.”

It also gives you the ability to say, “Oh, I just landed this big retail account,” or, “I just got into this publication, so now I know I need to hire this kind of person.” Once you have those people, it’s important that you’re indoctrinating them into your company culture which should be both regenerative for them and allow them to be challenged. That really means you need to be thinking about your work environment. Are you placing the right people with the right tasks? All too often, we see people who just hire staff and assume another body is another qualified person.

In essence, you are setting up someone to fail. You have to be very clear and specific about what people are good at and what kinds of projects they want to be doing, and then give them the right work. I guarantee if you match the right job with the right person, you’re going to have a match made in gold. Once you have the right person and the right set-up, it’s also about having a great teamwork-first mentality. You’re building this great team and want to make sure you give them the right responsibilities. You want to make sure they understand they’re valued and that they’re in a supportive environment.

Don’t make it impossible for someone to tell you, “Hey, I don’t know” or, “How does this work?” This is all part of your onboarding process. While you’re onboarding, definitely sit down and make sure you understand what the timelines are, what the KPIs and metrics are, what are the goals of their role and how they’re going to know they’re doing a good job. The more you can explain to someone what you’re looking for, the easier it’s going to be for them to satisfy those standards and requirements.

3. Allow Time for Integration and Training.

Even the smartest person will have a learning curve- it’s to be expected. Don’t expect to hire someone and all of a sudden in week two you think they’re going to be soaring. Give your employees about a 60 to 90-day grace period. I would even put that in any of your contracts and agreements. Explain that you want to see them reach certain goals and metrics by 60 or 90 days to really see if this is a great fit.

It’s always critical to be thinking about the lifecycle of your business. Get the right organizational planning, understand and identify the right people, and make sure you have the cash flow to pay the right staff. You’re going to find people who are willing to give you a price break in the beginning because they love what you’re doing and they want to work for you and you love what they’re doing, but understand that part of growing the right team is being able to pay people what they’re worth and honoring and respecting their time and energy.

I hope this gave you some amazing ideas on how to attract, grow and retain the right talent. I’m a firm believer. I have seen it work in multiple organizations and practiced it myself- and I’m going to tell you, it takes time to find the right people, but trust me, it’s worth it.

Are you in the process of scaling up your company? Send us an email at hello@scalingretail.com. Scaling up means ramping up the interview process. What will you ask promising candidates? Here’s a tool that can help: download your FREE COPY of the “Top 10 Questions to Ask Potential Hires”.

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