This article was first published in the Mercury Bay Informer of 25 October 2017. See www.theinformer.co.nz
Employing staff can be daunting. Will they do a good job? Will your customers and employees like them? What are the legal requirements? The Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment and the Inland Revenue Department have free information to help you fulfil your legal and tax obligations but it is you who must decide who is best for the job and how to retain them.
Start by being clear about what tasks the person will be completing as well as the competencies needed for the role. Design interview questions around these competencies and listen to your intuition as well as to what you are being told. Ask candidates back for a second interview if you are unsure and speak to at least two referees, listening carefully to what they are and are not saying. Before the employee starts work you must have agreed on the terms and conditions of employment and have this recorded in a signed contract and position description.
Reduce the opportunity for misunderstandings at the start by having a comprehensive induction process. At a minimum this should cover your vision and mission, who does what, and your policies and procedures.
It is often said that employees leave managers not jobs. Reduce the likelihood of employees leaving you by checking in regularly through performance management reviews and informal chats. Address issues as soon as they arise, and listen to their feedback, even if it comes when you are busy. Finally, acknowledge all good work in a variety of ways.