Are you stepping outside your hiring comfort zone for the first time? As a small insurance business, you may have been lucky enough to hire from your friends and family at first. However, as you grow, you will find that you need the skills of others outside your circle of family and friends. How do you get ready to hire the right people for your new insurance jobs?
What Job Do You Need to Fill?
If you're used to doing everything with your small team, you'll need to define which needs someone else could fill. You may need to hire because you have a specific need, such as marketing or administrative support. Then again, you may know that you need some extra support just about everywhere. In that case, you'll need to create a position that makes sense. You may end up redefining several jobs at your company if you are moving from a "jack of all trades" model into a model in which people have specific positions such as administrative support.
Do You Have Enough Opportunities?
On its own, feeling frazzled isn't a reason to hire, but if you have too many eager clients, that's a better reason. If you're turning down work or getting complaints because clients want you to expand into a new area, you may need to hire. According to Inc., "you shouldn't hire until you have adequate work for another person to handle." Make sure that you have the revenue or a large amount of potential interest prior to hiring so that you can bring on a new employee and keep that person employed in the long term.
Know Who You Need
Before you hire, spend some time articulating your corporate culture. You may be small and you may not have a marketing department, but you do have a way of doing business. You want to make sure that the person you hire is able to fit into your corporate culture almost seamlessly so that your clients love this new employee as much as they adore your current employees.
Think about these questions:
How casual or formal is your communication?
What is your sense of humor?
How strict are you about rules and corporate guidelines?
What enthusiasm do you have for individual innovation?
As you ask people questions about their background, there are some questions that are off-limits. These include questions about race, sexual orientation, marital status, age, and religion.
Be Ready for the Process of Hiring
According to Entrepreneur, "extra manpower entails a whole new string of legal obligations, liabilities, expenses and, of course, paperwork."
Make sure that you do your due diligence when hiring. Your employee is responsible for very personal information, and you need to make sure that you protect your clients' information. Determine what kinds of checks you need to do. These could include:
Confirming prior employment and educational credentials
Asking for a criminal record check or driving record
Getting character and employment references
At American Agents Alliance, we help you find your place in the insurance world. Whether you're hiring for insurance jobs or looking for networking opportunities, our many membership benefits will help support you as your insurance agency grows. Contact us today and see how we can help you build your insurance business.