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Unexpected Ways To Find Your Next Employee

Unexpected Ways To Find Your Next Employee

There’s usually no way of predicting what your next employee will look like, how old they are — or where they might be waiting, hoping to secure an interview with you. We all know the traditional routes to take when a search for talent begins. You can draft a job description and post it on an

There’s usually no way of predicting what your next employee will look like, how old they are — or where they might be waiting, hoping to secure an interview with you.

We all know the traditional routes to take when a search for talent begins. You can draft a job description and post it on an online job board, or on a site like LinkedIn.

Depending on the job, the skill set and level of experience required, you may get a lot of resumes landing in your inbox. Even then, however, you might wonder occasionally if you’re not missing some of the best candidates.

Sometimes the people you’d ideally want to hire are already employed, perhaps even with a competitor, and they’re not really on the market for a new role.

There may also be some talented people who didn’t apply for your role because they haven’t checked the job board you used, or aren’t as active on LinkedIn as they could be.

If the kind of person you want has only worked in large, multinational entities, they might not consider moving to an SMB, even though they would probably be interested if you had a chance to get them excited about yours.

And course, there’s the conventional wisdom that many jobs don’t get posted at all because they’re being shared on the “hidden network” of referrals within a particular network of professionals. In practice, though, your peers may not have anyone that comes to mind for your particular vacancy.

Hiring can be one of the biggest expenses for SMBs, so there’s extra incentive to make sure you only hire the absolute best candidates.

That means you might need to think outside the box in terms of places where the best talent can be found.

Have you considered any of these possibilities? If not, it may be time to try them:

1.Your social media feed

Hopefully you’re already using social media services like Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook as part of your marketing strategy, but that’s not the only reason to keep up with all the posts that appear there.

As you follow more people on social, you may start to notice someone who stands out from the rest. They’re the person who often seems to offer some wisdom or lessons learned on the job. Some days they might share their philosophies for solving problems, or serving customers. When interesting articles or trends get shared on your social feeds, most likely they came from this person.

What you’re seeing here is someone who’s obviously engaged with their industry, who has a strong network of their own, or simply demonstrates a positive attitude in what they share on social. This doesn’t always mean they’ll make an ideal hire, but it might be worthing having a discussion with them to see if there’s a possible fit.

2. An industry event

Right now a lot of us aren’t going to in-person conferences, but there are plenty of virtual summits and webinars where you can learn all kinds of things to help you grow your business.

Not everyone who leads these kinds of sessions is a senior executive. Sometimes offering a talk can be a way for rising talent to build their personal brand and make themselves more noticeable to potential employers.

You don’t have to restrict yourself to the people delivering keynotes or sitting on panel discussions, either. If it’s a virtual event that has a chat function, keep your eye on those offering the most insightful comments or who are asking the best questions.

It’s usually not hard to track these people down afterwards, or even to message them privately on whatever platform is hosting the virtual event. Otherwise, look them up on LinkedIn and let them know you have a job opportunity they might want to explore.

3. Your CRM

Adopting a customer relationship management (CRM) platform was probably a decision you made in order to increase sales, not look for talent.

And yet, CRMs become a foundational tool for sales, marketing and customer service in part because they are repositories for all kinds of useful information.

As you examine all the data in a CRM, for instance, you may begin to recognize a contact within your customer base who has always been a pleasure to meet. They might be the person who has emerged as a true fan and even advocates for your products and services to other people they know in their network.

There’s nothing strange about hiring someone who started out as a customer. In fact, these can be great candidates because they already believe in what your company offers and its mission. This can ease the process of training and onboarding, and gives them extra credibility when they talk to other customers.

4. The vendor/supplier ecosystem

Yes, SMBs exist to serve their customers, but there are always going to be circumstances where you’re the customer instead.

Think about all the companies you turn to when it comes time to order new materials, or add to your existing inventory of products.

It’s not just that people within your vendor community understand your company because you’re a customer. They may also have shared relationships with other companies in your industry, which gives them highly valuable expertise.

These are also people who might be able to identify untapped customer opportunities or segments which allow you to grow even more quickly.

The talent is out there!

Whether you choose these areas to search for your next hire or not, the next steps you take will determine whether you’ve truly “found” someone.

You’ll still have to ask thoughtful questions in your interview, provide opportunities for them to do the same, and to assess them in terms of soft skills and your business’s culture as well as all their other qualifications.

If they turnout to be the candidate you wanted, by all means make the offer and bring them on. Just be sure to have one more conversation with them: where do they typically look for career opportunities? Their answer may tell you where you should be looking next.

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