Ughhhhh…. Not ANOTHER Blogpost/Article/Lecture on the importance of networking…
This is different!
I’m not going to talk about the network that every business consultant and sales trainer talks about. Everyone knows the importance of networking to grow your prospect list and increase your revenue. That wasn’t news when we still thought the earth was flat, let alone now (though it is still VERY important!).
Today, we’re going to talk about another network. And this network is the one that MOST entrepreneurs skip out on (even as they push their sales teams to increase their networking!) and that is the INTERNAL HIRE NETWORK.
Turnover is a reality of business. Especially in high pressure/pay for performance roles like sales and recruiting. Add to that the pressure of a small business or a start up (low resources, high emotion, New/inexperienced managers, inconsistent revenue, concentration risk, etc.) and you have a recipe for even higher turnover than industry norms.
So what are YOU doing to mitigate your “People” risk as an Entrepreneur?
Actually, hold that thought, before we get into how to solve this problem let’s deal with the excuses before they are even uttered:
“I don’t have TIME for this. I have a business to run, a staff to manage, and clients to satisfy! How can I take the time to follow whatever you advice or suggestion you are gong to give me?”
That’s a great question. And an important one. The reality of Entrepreneurship is that it is a more than full time job in the best of circumstances BUT the other reality is that if we don’t do anything different then we will always be where we are.
If we don’t solve our “People Problem” it will always exist.
So, how do we solve it? Another great question!
In order to solve the problem of employee turnover, substandard performance, and insufficient organizational growth we have to build a candidate pipeline for critical internal roles.
Spend a MINIMUM of one-hour per week cultivating, maintaining, and nurturing a list (pipeline) of people that are the types of individuals you would hire for your critical roles.
PROTIP: Most, if not all, of that list will be comprised of people who are HAPPY where they are and have no interest in moving now!
So why are we talking to them?
- As you develop a relationship with them they will begin to willingly offer you referrals to other people when you call them to let them know about openings you have on your team and they will not want to offer you poor candidates as they know that it will reflect poorly on them.
- Life happens! Dream jobs lose their luster, compensation plans change, bosses move on, and these A-listers that you have been talking to become available. Sometimes it coincides with an opening, other times it is worth having the hard internal conversation to determine if it makes sense to bring this person aboard to “Top-Grade” a poorly performing employee when they become available.
- They are often a wealth of information on the overall health of the job market in that sector and an insight in to how other organizations are dealing with market conditions and challenges.
Now that we know WHY we are talking to them, WHY are they talking to us?
- The more potential employers in their professional network the more secure they are in their career.
- Knowing senior players in their field gives them access to ideas and information that they would not have if they only rely on their company for information.
- It is empowering and ego-gratifying to be valued by other organizations.
PROTIP: Always remember, just like any other professional relationship, you need to add value to your candidate pipeline in order for it to stay and you need to contact each member often enough to grow a relationship (minimum of once every 30 days!)
One hour a week. That’s all I’m asking. Take one hour each week and dedicate that to building, nurturing, and growing a pipeline for each of your critical internal roles and you will not be forced to hire “whoever is available” and hold on to people who are “projects” anymore. So get started!
If you don’t, where will you be this time NEXT year?
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