SME growth pains - recruiting a manager. Advice please

Discussion in 'Growing and Managing a Business' started by cakeboy, Jul 22, 2009.

  1. cakeboy

    cakeboy
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    Some advice please.....

    After setting up my business from the kitchen table in 2002 I now have a one million pound turnover company and six staff. Having considered a sale I'm now of the opinion that I'd rather keep the company but would like to take a bit of a step back (a mixture of boredom, an eye on getting involved in other opportunities and a bit of spare time) so I am now planning on taking on a business manager/sales manager to take up most of my workload.

    Two things concern me;

    1) How do I safely hand over the reigns of my 'baby' that I have nurtured since birth?

    2) How do I broach this with the team, seeing as I'm importing someone above their heads (none of them a right for the job). Do I tell them before I start hiring or once he's hired? Or somewhere in between?

    Any advice appreciated, particularly from anyone that has been through this process.

    Cakeboy
     
  2. Fergal

    Fergal
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    Welcome to Business Advice Forum Cakeboy and congratulations on having built up such a successful business. When you say that you want to step back from the business, are you planning to reduce the time you spend on your business gradually or are you looking for an almost a complete break after which you would spend very little time on your business?

    Have you considered that maybe one or more of your existing staff may have strengths or interests in particular areas of your business and could handle additional responsibilities, even if they are not ready for a management role yet? This could help lighten your work load in a gradual manner.

    An important step is to define exactly what you expect the manager person to do in the role, in terms of their responsibilities and tasks. This will give you the basis of the job description. Then write out the skills or experience that someone would need in order to handle those responsibilities. You will now have most of the information you need to write an ad for the job vacancy.

    As regards telling your team, I'd suggest that you inform them of your plans once you have written the job ad and are about to advertise for the position. Hence, they won't be shocked and surprised by reading the job ad or hearing about it from someone else in your industry.

    Once your staff see the job ad they might decide for themselves that they are not ready for it or not interested in that type of responsibility. Or perhaps one of them will surprise you by stepping up to the plate for part of the job or maybe even knowing someone who would be suited to the role.

    You might find this previous recruitment thread helpful, the links in my reply (at that thread) are to very useful and informative articles on writing job descriptions and choosing the best person for a job.

    Good luck with it and please keep us posted on your thoughts and progress.
     
  3. Nazreen

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    I think your concerns are understandable and it's good that you're taking into consideration what your 6 other staffs would feel if you hire a manager. It would have been good though if you would also consider your existing staffs' skills and personal interests as Fergal has suggested above. You might try and groom them to take on some of your responsibilities, not necessarily just one staff but distribute it to them according to their skills and aptitude.

    If that doesn't work and you really think that they don't have what it takes to fill in on your responsibilities then that, in my opinion, is the only time that you should consider hiring someone else. But you should not just hire one on the spot without informing your staffs first.
     
  4. cakeboy

    cakeboy
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    "are you planning to reduce the time you spend on your business gradually or are you looking for an almost a complete break after which you would spend very little time on your business?
    "


    I'm planning on dropping down to say 2 days a week, not a full break. A lot may depend on the quality of the person I hire.

    In answer to both posters (tyvm for your contribs) I am sure that none of the existing team are ready.

    Please keep the advice coming......
     
  5. bookmarkmaster

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    Business conditions among the SME business sector remained strong in the December quarter, according to the latest quarterly survey of SMEs by NAB.

    All sectors other than construction, finance and health reported improved conditions, says George Frazis, executive general manager of business and private banking at NAB. “But the latter two industries are still experiencing strong conditions.”

    About 44% of the SMEs surveyed in the SME Business Conditions Index expect profits to improve over the next year, down slightly from 48% in the September quarter.

    Those SMEs in the financial and health sectors are the most optimistic about profits for the next 12 months.
     
  6. JBMedia

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    One thing is for sure, it sounds like your business, as far as employees go, isn't that big yet. Yet, you do have some employee staff already. Do you feel that one of your employees you currently have on payroll knows enough and has what it takes to manage the company/business? Do you have any employees that have been with the business since the beginning and know the overall mission of the company? These are just some thoughts to think about on for a little while.

    If you're going to look for a new manager, chances are it's going to be someone you have no idea about. You'll definitely need to get a resume and have them show their college credentials. Keep in mind, now days, it's not hard to get falsified documents, so if you see someone you like, bring them in for an interview. When your interviewing them, go over questions that they would only know based on their resume and college credentials. Not specifically things drawn out from them though. When you're interviewing them, you can get a feel for their overall personality, honesty, and loyalty. This isn't ALWAYS the case though, so be aware.

    Either way, whether you promote one of your previous employees or someone new, always make sure you have enough time to go over your business statistics, the numbers, especially that of the financial nature. And when I say to go over, I mean to directly go over them yourself, not just asking the manager for the reports.

    Also, make sure to ask your other employees their review of the new manager from time to time. Especially if you had employees since the beginning, more than likely they want to see you succeed as well because it could mean a more secure and/or better paying job for them as well. So keep in mind that feedback is very important. Not only from your clients and potential customers, but also very important from your own employees!

    Hope that helps some.
     
  7. biijuu

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    I think the best option would be to hire a new employee, when you are still there.

    And gradually transfer your responsibilities to the new one. So that the current employees will not really feel the change in management. Also, you are still around, so you will come to know about the quality of the new comer very soon.

    You have posted this a while ago, did something happen already? I'm curious :)

    Good luck!
     

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