Finding Good Help?

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by Tlvoskamp, Sep 21, 2007.

  1. Tlvoskamp

    Tlvoskamp LawnSite Member
    Messages: 48

    Howdy all,

    I have a question for you, I am having a difficult time finding workers who are willing to commit to being a reliable helper. It seems I am constantly having workers who have issues come up and cant make it to work. How do you guys go about finding good help, and how do you communicate to them the necessity of them being relible besides just telling them on the front side. I tell workers I expect them to be there, but is seems conditional in their mind. Any insight would be greatly appreciated. I am frustrated with employees, I guess that is part of running a business.


    Tlvoskamp :confused:
  2. Tahoe1889

    Tahoe1889 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 125

    Look for a Mexican!
  3. Mrs. H

    Mrs. H LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 708

    If you find out the secret, let me in on it too.
  4. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    When and How to Hire Additional Employees

    By David Javitch
    From's Grow Your Biz Center

    Section 1 When

    As a business owner, one of your most important tasks is workforce management. It's your job to make sure you have the right people—and the right number of people—to keep your company running smoothly. Now let's say your business is growing and you're sensing you need to hire new employees. How can you really be sure the time is right to bring in additional staff? There are at least seven common clues:

    1. Your employees are working very hard—perhaps too hard—and they're letting you know—or complaining—that they have too much to do. Complaints of this nature aren't uncommon, but your task is to determine if they're legitimate. How can you do that? Try talking to your employees and asking them to validate their concerns of being "overworked." Then look at attendance and productivity indicators to substantiate their claims. If what you find confirms their feedback, then you might decide to reorganize and restructure roles and responsibilities to better deal with the workflow. Or you could use your new knowledge as a guide to hiring additional employees.
    2. Employees claim they want to take on more tasks or spend additional time on current ones—if only they had the time.
    3. The growth curve for your products or services is increasing, and you identify that as a positive trend, not just a blip on the consumer radar.
    4. You see an opportunity for growth and expansion in your industry or related industries, and decide that now's the time to take a calculated risk to expand. But current employees aren't available to assume additional responsibilities.
    5. You determine that your employee's existing job skills and knowledge are fine for your company's current level of productivity, but to expand, you'll need either increased skills and knowledge or a new and different set of skills and knowledge.
    6. Revenue is at or above target and you project it to continue; other than financially rewarding yourself and/or your employees, you wonder what to do with the increased revenue.

    After taking a long, hard look at the state of your business, you decide to expand by hiring additional employees. But what do you have to take into account and do when adding a new position and a new hire? First, you need to create a comprehensive, clearly written job description that includes these factors:

    * The major and related duties, responsibilities and tasks the employee must perform
    * The expected standards of job performance
    * The reporting relationships—the people or job title to whom the employee will report and who, if anyone, will report to the new hire
    * The financial and fiscal responsibilities and spending limits—if any
    * The standards of acceptable behavior
    * The working conditions

    Besides being used when hiring new staff, this same document is crucial in serving as a basis for evaluating employee performance. If it's too general, non-specific or doesn't adequately reflect what the employee actually does on the job, then it's a waste of your time and effort.

    Section 2 How

    When it comes to actually choosing the best candidate for the job, the best advice I can give you is this: Hiring someone simply because you need an "extra body" is foolish and inevitably results in poor performance, decreased productivity and decreased morale. So be sure to hire only someone who actually fits the job description you've created. In fact, shooting for the stars by knowingly increasing your standards to hire the best possible candidate—even it takes some time to find the right person—is well worth it.

    Once you've hired someone, you need to decide what you'll do to maximize the person's strengths while addressing and minimizing limitations. Here are some tips that will help you get the most of your new hire:

    * Set up a process with the new hire's direct supervisor to monitor progress. Provide immediate feedback on all aspects of job performance. Don't wait for the end of the typical 90-day review period to catch the person doing something right or wrong. Immediate feedback provides the immediate opportunity for growth and improved performance.

    * Create a training program, either formal or informal, depending on the size of your company. The goal of this program will be to bring the new person up to speed with the knowledge, skills and abilities necessary for successful completion of their new job. Simply because a candidate was successful in a similar job at another organization does not ensure this person will be successful in your organization.

    * Develop a mentoring system: Select an individual who can serve as "Big Brother" or "Big Sister" to offer advice, especially on "how things are done around here" as well as possible landmines, such as difficult people, issues, politics, processes, norms or unwritten rules. This mentor should be a respected individual in your company, but should not be the person's direct supervisor. (Creating such a system is also a good idea for existing employees.)

    By following these guidelines, you'll be able to decide whether or not to expand your workforce, create a workable job description, provide feedback to the new hire, and created a training and mentoring system to increase the potential for success. Good luck!
  5. zz4guy

    zz4guy LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 901

    Just keep looking. When you find the next guy fire the old one and tell the new guy why the old one's being fired. Eventually you'll find somebody who gets it and shows up on time.

    If it were me I'd start looking for someone the first sign the guy is gonna be shaky. Then you'll have someone lined up when the sh*t hits the fan. You should always be looking for people to help you out.

    You wont be able to change the ones who are unreliable.
  6. lawnpro724

    lawnpro724 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,201

    Not to be smart a** but get used to it. For every 10-15 employees you go through you might find 1 good one. I have had good luck with my employees in the last few years but back in the mid 90s it was a different story, turnover was very high.

    HOOLIE LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,981

    There's no magic pill for employees unfortunately. Sadly, you just have to be ready to fire anybody that you hire. Nobody can be a good employee if they don't show up for work. If they're calling in with 'issues' from Day One, cut 'em loose, don't invest anymore time in them.
  8. Tlvoskamp

    Tlvoskamp LawnSite Member
    Messages: 48

    Thanks for all of your insight. I really liked that essay on hiring and not just hiring an additional body but trying to find someone who really fits the job description well. I hope all goes well for you guys, keep working hard and I will do the same.

  9. Gene $immons

    Gene $immons LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,028

    Unfortunately, It is a never ending problem keeping quality people around.
  10. lifetree

    lifetree LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,369

    I laughed at this one ... but it may actually work !!

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