BUILDING A SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS TEAM | COVID-19 & Beyond

FROM THE GROUND UP, ADDING TO YOUR CURRENT TEAM, OR PARTNERING

Pivot from the inside out building your sustainable business foundation:

The current economic environment is one of change, with the trials and tribulations the covid-19 global pandemic brings, we also see the growth of new insights and ideas. It has savvy business owners and entrepreneurs like you thinking about all the ways to make your business more capable of sustaining through this changing world. One of the most important things to consider when building, or reworking, a lasting company is building the best team possible for your business’s unique vision. (Don’t have a unique vision? The first step is to complete the process below to find out what aligns with you with the MBTI Leadership Quiz Assessment).

If you want your business to sustain for the long haul then you need to build your business foundation with the right structure, and find the right people to work with. Whether you’re searching for the perfect strategic partner to help you build your business, looking to hire your first employees, or adding to your current team: one thing is for sure, hiring the wrong people wastes time and money and adds stress to the entire work environment. So how do you streamline the hiring process to ensure you can find people who will work well in the team workplace or work from home environment, beyond just their experience and skill-set?

BUILDING YOUR PERSONAL PURPOSE & PRINCIPLES

The first step is to know yourself. Know your purpose and vision, know your principles and values, know your strengths and weaknesses. If you’re not clear on the reason you want to create a business, the problem you want to solve with your skillset, then it can be hard to find people that align with that purpose. And it can end up being compromised by finding the wrong team members, who might have a completely different vision and value system.

In order to be happy and gain longevity in your pursuits, they need to be in alignment with who you are. In order to maintain a vision that is in alignment with your principles, you will do best to surround yourself with people who share similar values, or a complementary value system that can respect your purpose.

But that doesn’t mean you’re looking for imitations of yourself, or people who are the same as you are. Those people that respectfully challenge you to be better are ideal. You want to find strategic partners, managers, and staff members who have strengths in areas that you have weaknesses.

For example, those who can communicate and delegate where you might try to take on too much yourself. Or someone who might be able to focus on the daily budget and practical expenses, while you focus on the big picture vision. People who you can communicate with, who can share in a common goal and respect the values and autonomy of those around them, and who complement each other’s skillset in different yet equally valuable ways.

 

USING PERSONALITY ASSESSMENTS IN HIRING – DON’T DO IT! UNLESS YOU DO IT THIS WAY:

One way some employers are building their teams is by using pre-screening personality type tests, such as MBTI, enneagram, DISC, and more. But this is a bad idea. Not only are there ethical concerns when it comes to dividing and prioritizing “types” instead of individuals, but employers are usually wrong about what they’re looking for. For example, most employment fields think they want extroverts over introverts, dis-counting the some of the communication skills certain introverts can exhibit better than many extroverts do. Hiring needs to come down to individual skills, not pre-screened types that assume entire personalities.
DISC is not recommended for pre-screening. No typification can define the personality, skillset, or aptitude of potential applicants. There will always be a margin of error that might cause you to miss out on one of the best candidates. For these reasons, it’s a terrible idea to pre-screen clients with type-based assessments, and assume that defines whether they’d fit your team. You lose the chance to look for the specific requirements and skillset you’re looking to fill based on individuality.

But you can use type assessments, that are designed to identify common strengths and weaknesses in communication, information gathering, decision-making, and work environment preferences to your benefit in the hiring process. Wait, did I just say the opposite of what I’ve just been saying? Well, sort of. But I’m not suggesting you use it on your potential candidates. These assessments are best turned inward, not outward.

CHECK IN WITH YOURSELF AND YOUR CURRENT BUSINESS TEAM

Assess yourself, have the members of your team assess themselves, assess each other and identify what strengths and weaknesses are already present in your team. What needs to be delegated, and whether you have a team-member with the time and skillset to take on that task. Where are the gaps in your efficiency, planning, purpose, vision, and in your communication?

Step by Step Team Building Process from the Inside Out

1. Self-assess

Start by taking an assessment that will get you and everyone on your team thinking about their own strengths and weaknesses. Interests, and disinterests. Ideally you want your team to be focusing on the tasks that they’re good at and/or they enjoy doing. I very highly recommend this MBTI based workplace leadership assessment. Click Here for the MBTI Workplace Leadership Assessment, especially for your managerial team and/or business partner. If you haven’t built a team yet, you can still asses yourself but in step 2, just ask a friend or colleague to give you some feedback on if your self-assessment fits how you really present as a person. 

2. Discuss

Then sit down and honestly discuss your strengths and weaknesses. Doing it this way, with the human element allows everyone to become more than a type. Just use those types as a springboard from which to self-reflect. Maybe your type typically isn’t great at tactfully catering to emotions, but it’s a skill you’ve personally developed. Your type is not a rigid definition of an entire personality in a box. It’s a starting point from which to examine your true strengths, weaknesses, and interests as a complete and unique human being. 

3. Examine Business Needs

Next, break down the tasks that need to be completed to keep your business running smoothly (if you’ve built a team, this is best done in a brainstorming session). And be specific, include things like negotiating with clients, customer service troubleshooting, delegating tasks, following up on everyone’s task completion, identifying tasks that need to be done, offering constructive criticism, motivating the team and employees, creating a bonded atmosphere and harmony in the workplace, ensuring everyone is on the same page with what needs to be done & what the goal is, actually DOING each task, defining the company vision and planning into the future, etc. etc. What needs to be done on a daily basis, weekly, monthly, yearly? Who is best suited to do it? 

4. Apply Specific Needs to Hiring Process

When you identify your gaps, then right there is where this method becomes incredibly effective for hiring. Now you have a detailed breakdown of tasks your team is skilled in, and you know exactly what skillset you need to add to the team. You know what tasks you need your employees to be able to handle, and what strengths you need them to bring to the table. You know what skillset you need to add to your managerial team, as well. You have a blueprint of exactly what you’re looking for in new hires, and now you can go about looking for individuals who exhibit those particular skills and interests. You can ask SPECIFIC questions such as “What experience do you have in negotiating with clients and customers?” or “Please detail your experience in managing or mediating conflict, and how you can bring this skill to the workplace.” And, if you are sifting through a lot of applicants, you can do that in the pre-screening process, before you sit down for an interview. 

It is this specificity that gives you an edge in hiring, but this method also gives you an extra leg up because it becomes a brilliantly detailed assessment of team duties, and can streamline your entire work environment. Perhaps you had one member of your team who was being handed too many tasks and was feeling underappreciated, if that was the case you might have been headed toward losing this valued member of your team and being left trying to fill a big gap in talent. Perhaps you yourself were trying to do too much and headed for a burn-out that could have derailed your motivation. This check-in is important because it lets you know who’s doing what and whether they feel confident doing it.  

If you don’t have a team yet, it lets you identify whether the necessary tasks are a reasonable workload for just you, or you and your business partner alone, and what skillset is best to add to the team if not.  

If you haven’t done so, Click Here for the MBTI Workplace Leadership Assessment 

A LIST OF COMMON & DIVERSE BUSINESS TASKS & SKILLSETS TO GET YOU STARTED:

Team Communication Skills

  • Coaching and developing others  
  • Cultivating harmonious work environments  
  • Delegating tasks so they’re understood 
  • Empathizing with clients and team members 
  • Identifying skills and capabilities of others  
  • Maintaining work relationships  
  • Making sure everyone is heard  
  • Managing Workplace Stress 
  • Mediating conflict 
  • Motivating others  
  • Communicating bad news/criticism fairly (i.e. firing people, offering constructive reprimands, etc.) 
  • Leading a team 
  • Following direction 
  • Written communication with team 
  • Verbal communication with team 

Systemization & Problem-Solving Skills

  • Being analytical/thinking things through 
  • Creating solutions to streamline current system 
  • Identifying problems in current system 
  • Seeing the details 

Goal-oriented Skills

  • Focusing on the future vision 
  • Recognizing emerging opportunities 
  • Seeing the big picture 
  • Strategic planning 

Innovation/Idea Skills

  • Brainstorming 
  • Coming up with creative solutions 
  • Keeping on top of the current market 
  • Predicting changes in the market environment 
  • Predicting potential future problems in the current path 

Client Relations and Sales Skills

  • Taking decisive action 
  • Checking back in on decisions 
  • Knowing what tasks to delegate, and to whom 
  • Focusing on the present 
  • Making day-to-day decisions 
  • Making tough decisions (i.e. firing someone) 
  • Taking decisive action 
  • Taking the initiative 
  • Working autonomously 

Getting Things Done/Practical Skills

  • Negotiating with clients 
  • Networking 
  • Sharing information about your brand/Spreading the word 
  • Defining and finding ways to communicate what makes the business unique (aka brand) 
  • Written communication to clients 
  • Verbal communication with clients 
  • Initiating Sales 
  • Closing Sales 
  • Maintaining customer relationships 
  • Getting reviews