How to Avoid a “Bad” Hire

It’s a fact of business. At some point, you’re going to need to let go of someone on your team.

It’s a scary moment and I nearly threw up the first time I had to do it in my business.

I was so sure they were going to take it badly and they would freak out on me.

So I held off for as long as I could trying to make it work with them (a terrible idea btw and we’ll talk about it next time).

After weeks of walking on eggshells, pushing my boundaries so they could work more easily, and generally feeling anxious and dreading every meeting…

I blurted out “ImCancelingOurContract” so fast that I had to repeat myself… twice… 😣😳

They took it better than I thought and we ended our work amicably, but I knew I could have avoided the whole situation if I had done more vetting before I hired them.

There are a lot of reasons a VA might be a bad fit, including:

🚫 Poor culture fit – your personality, work style, and vision don’t align (this is what got me in trouble)
🚫 Misaligned skills – They can’t do what you need.
🚫 Lack of availability – They don’t have the bandwidth to support you.

So how do you avoid making a bad hire?

The challenge with hiring is that unless you’ve done a lot of it (read: trial and error), you might not know what questions to ask or what to review to get a real feel for them as a potential member of your team.

Because NO ONE is going to say they’re a terrible fit during a discovery call (unless they really can’t help you).

To weed out the VAs that might not be a fit, it comes down to your process.

Focus on:

1️⃣ Can they do the work you need – If they are a tech-focused VA that sometimes dabbles in marketing and you need solid marketing help, it doesn’t matter how highly recommended they are, it’s not going to be a great fit.

Take referrals with a grain of salt and know that your business friends all use resources differently. Make sure the person you’re hiring knows how to do what you actually need.

2️⃣ If their schedule works for you – You can find amazing VAs all over the world, but make sure their timing and workflow are a good fit for you.

Do you need client support during EST or time-sensitive responses during business hours to progress, communicate and feel secure? Then make sure that that is a realistic option.

3️⃣ If they’re a good personality fit – No one wants awkward or tense interactions with their VA. Pay attention to personality and whether you get along.

It doesn’t matter how skilled they are if you don’t feel comfortable with them. You get to choose who you work with and chances are you want to work with someone with whom you can build a rapport.

Integrate these pieces into your hiring process and you’ll feel more confident interviewing and you’ll be able to zero in on best fitting VAs without wasting precious time.

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