The Lure of Working for a Small Business
As a small business owner, you may feel that candidates will not be looking your way for a job. Perhaps you feel that you do not have the big salary to offer, and there are no affordable health benefits you can provide. Or, you think that you may not have enough to keep a full-time employee busy, but can you find good part-time help? And, as a small business owner, you are protective of your business, and if you are going to hire someone, they need to be outstanding…how will you find those people? Why would they work for you and not the big corporation down the street? Here’s why.
Working at a small business provides an environment that is very attractive to some candidates. They want to feel like they are part of a “family” and really know their employer and co-workers. Some candidates avoid a large business, because they do not want to be placed at a cubicle and not sure their boss even knows their name. While some people like the feeling of some anonymity at work, others search out the opportunity to work for a small business where they feel important to its growth and prosperity.
When you work at a small business, there is always potential for growth. Some candidates want to work at a business that will someday have three times more employees than it has now. When an employee has been there since the beginning with a business, they may end up in a leadership position in the future.
Some candidates may search out a small business environment, because chances are, the leaders will be a bit more flexible about your schedule. It may not be true in all cases, but since the business is smaller, the employer may be a bit more understanding about running to an event at school or leaving a few minutes early on some days. Corporations with a large staff often can have strict rules about any time taken off during the day, making it difficult for working parents or people trying to earn a degree at the same time.
If candidates are nervous about starting their career or getting back in the workforce and taking on new responsibilities with different skills, working for a small business provides an environment to learn. It is less intimidating to ask questions, and there are not 20 other staff members competing for time with leadership. Many new teachers say that working in a small school when they first begin teaching helped them to grow as an educator and feel confident about moving into a larger school. The same can be said for growing with a small business to begin a new career.
Small businesses that are locally grown and owned can be the magic words to some candidates. They want their community to grow from the inside and want to help small, local businesses to flourish. Big business is not their thing, and they seek out working for smaller businesses with ties to the community.
As a small business owner, you should feel confident that there is a pool of applicants looking to work for you to grow, learn, and help you build your business.
If you are sitting in a dead-end job, are unsure about what you want to do, or like having flexibility and freedom while working, this is for you! There may be a perfect option waiting for you with a client of ours as a temporary or contract employee. What is a temporary or contract job? It is a job that is only for a certain range of time, perhaps because someone is on leave, or it is a project-based position, or they may be “trying things out” to see what is needed long term with the company. Through these temporary jobs, you can become more marketable than some people coming out of long term careers. Why?
It’s time to get real. As recruiters we love working with qualified candidates who are a match for career opportunities, but often we see some bad habits and mannerisms that are not helping you achieve the job you want. We see it in our office, and we hear it from our clients, so here goes with what NOT TO DO as a job candidate. Don’t forget the old saying, “the job interview starts the moment you walk through the door.”
Look at your phone while waiting in the lobby. And, absolutely do not look at your phone during the interview. Instead, turn your phone off, and put it away before you walk in the door. The best option would be to leave in your car. Nothing feels more like you don’t care about what we are saying or the job than watching you glance at your phone or (gasp) answer the phone or a text during the interview time.
Disregard the person at the front desk of the office you are visiting. Instead, introduce yourself, be friendly, leave a great first impression that this person can talk about with the hiring manager you will be interviewing with that day. And, again, stay off your phone!
Take for granted the value of a firm handshake and look into the hiring manager’s eyes. Instead, smile, offer your hand, shake firmly, look the person in the eyes and say, “It’s great to meet you” or “It’s great to be here” or something along those lines. And, when you leave, shake their hand firmly again, look the person in the eyes, and say, “Thank you for your time and consideration.” It’s important, and they WILL remember it.
Act like you are too important for anyone you are talking to. You never know how important their voice may be in the hiring process. And, if you get through part of the interview and realize you do not really want the position, finish strong. Do not show that you don’t care! There could be another position in the company that you are more interested in later, and you will want them to remember you!
Have bad manners. Period. If you are not sure exactly how to act, ask your recruiter if your manners are up to par. If they are not, take their advice about what to do, how to dress, how to act. It’s all about impressions, first, middle, last at an interview or visit with a recruiter or hiring manager. Even if you are not the perfect fit for a position, the way you carry yourself will can place you in the candidate pool for a good placement. Improving your manners and ways of acting could mean getting the job, or not.
We are here to be your advocate but if you are not treating hiring managers or recruiters with respect, it’s hard to promote you to our clients. We recommend following this advice, you will feel more confident and have a better shot at getting the job!
The moment you find out you got the job offer.
Recruiters are in the “know.”
Not only do they know a candidate pool, they’ll know the way to identify the perfect candidate for you. Once you spell out your needs, they are able to look over their active and even find passive candidates that are potential fits for what you are trying to fill, saving you time (and therefore money).
They screen for you.
You don’t have to interview a line up of possible candidates because a recruiter has already screened them. Recruiters like to bring you their top “A” candidates to choose from, and weed out the “B” and “C” level ones.
Packaging the Position.
Recruiters take what you have and package it beautifully to sell it to a candidate who may not even be looking for a new position right now, but see the package and want to look into it. Packaging your position is sometimes hard when you stare at it every day, but recruiters are objective 3rd parties, which helps them to see what will attract or repel someone about a position you are offering.
It’s their job.
Recruiters work to get paid, literally. If they do not fill positions, they are not seeing their paycheck. So, they are motivated. They want to find a good hire for you, and they likely won’t stop until they make you happy. Their energy and motivation keeps hiring managers and business owners focused on more important tasks, and helps them to also stay motivated!