Hiring your first employee is a huge step. Perhaps you've always turned to family to help you manage your insurance agency, or perhaps this is your first step into the insurance business as well. Whether you've just taken over a new business and need to delve into hiring or you're expanding your existing business, you need to feel like you're making the right choice. What should you look for when you're hiring for your first insurance jobs?
Know What You Need
Hiring an employee is a significant investment in human resources. Before you hire, know exactly what you need to bring to your company. Do you need someone to manage administration so that you can focus more on other aspects of insurance jobs? Does this person need to know about marketing or social media? Consider what qualifications you need to hire for right now, but also consider what kinds of qualities and qualifications will help your business grow in the long run.
Small Business BC also recommends that before you hire, you evaluate whether a permanent employee is really what you need. For instance, you could reduce your workload by reviewing the way you work, bring on a temporary employee, or work with a freelancer on a specific project. Working with someone temporarily can also be a good way to try out having a new employee without the long-term commitment.
Consider How You'll Spread the Word
It can be tempting to hire a friend for your first insurance job, and that friend could indeed be the right fit for the position. However, you also need to make sure that you find someone who fits your business culture and who has the full complement of skills necessary for the position. According to Fortune, "Your shared long-term success needs to be the priority."
It can be worthwhile to look beyond your usual circle for your new employee: this gives you a wider group of people with diverse skills, and it also allows you to more easily hire and fire people if they don't work out as employees.
Hire Someone Who Can Handle a Newly-Created Position
The first employee to hold a job is in the unique position of co-creating that position with you. Consider what skills are absolute must-haves for the position, as you may not be able to easily train someone in those skills. Also look for someone who is both a self-starter and willing to incorporate feedback. The individual you hire will need to put time into creating procedures for your insurance agency and will also need to be able to respond to your thoughts about the shape of this new position.
Make Sure Your New Employee is an Excellent Cultural Fit
You need to hire someone who is highly-skilled at the specific aspects of the job that you've created. However, you also need to hire someone who can seamlessly integrate into the culture of your organization. As an employee in a small organization, your new staff person will need to deal with many different aspects of the job and will likely need to engage with your customers in some way. Don't just ask about skills: talk to your prospective employees about the way that they solve problems and engage with customers as well.
At American Agents Alliance, we want to make sure that your independent insurance agency succeeds. We're dedicated to the development of your business and other agencies. By working together, we can create a stronger network of insurance agencies. Are you curious to learn more? Contact us today.