Marni Hockenberg for Bookkeeping & CFO Services
In the words of Stanford economist Paul Romer, “a recession is a terrible thing to waste.”
By any standard, the past year has proven itself to be challenging, both personally and professionally. But it’s important to remember that out of challenge comes opportunity. In fact, just recently, a bank vice president in Washington, D.C., who specializes in small business banking solutions, commented that the number of customers who left or lost jobs and are now “finding their passion” through entrepreneurship and small business is significantly on the rise.
Whether you already are a business owner or leader, or whether the spirit of entrepreneurship is calling to you, there is no time like the present to take a strategic look at your company’s business goals and, specifically, your employment and hiring needs. As the marketplace begins picking up steam again, as it surely will, you will want to give your hiring strategy a “tune up” to avoid potential pitfalls and position your company for maximum success to build your bench strength before your competitors do.
1) Above all, don’t assume that your key employees are staying put just because of the current state of the economy. One Friday afternoon a key employee may walk into your office, unexpectedly, and hand you a resignation letter.
Think this could never happen to you? Guess again. If you could see my e-mail box, filled on a daily basis with e-mails from employees and executives proactively seeking new job opportunities, you would probably be surprised. You may not think your employees are looking for a new job, but chances are good that they are—whether they are afraid their current job may be eliminated or are concerned about the economic health of the company; whether they are growing weary of carrying the burden of additional work in the wake of layoffs; or whether they are simply high performers seeking new professional challenges.
Do prepare proactively now, before that Friday afternoon resignation becomes a painful reality.
2) Do start by reviewing your current staffing model and evaluating your employees’ job descriptions. Are the job descriptions current? Do the descriptions reflect what each individual was hired to do? Take this opportunity to ask whether the right people are in the right positions and doing the right activities to move the company forward.