Human Resources Blog - Spark Hire

4 Things to Avoid When Hiring for Your Startup

4 Things to Avoid when Hiring for your StartupStarting a new business is an exciting time, but it can also be a challenging time.  Making the right hiring decisions is key in a new company.  There are 4 hiring mistakes that you will want to avoid, especially in the beginning stages of your new business.

1. Hiring too many people

The one thing that will instantly result in failure within a startup is hiring more people than needed to get the job done.  Not only will you invest large amounts of funds in order to pay your many employees, but you will also end up with a chaotic environment of employees working on top of other employees.  On the other hand, you could also end up paying some of your employees to sit around, with nothing to do.

When you start your new business, you need to be a lean machine when it comes to on-boarding staff.  This will not only save you from overspending, but it will also allow you to get your staff operating and performing accurately.  Ensuring that you have the right people in the right positions is the most valuable thing you can do for your startup.  Do not over staff, as you cannot afford for your small business to be top-heavy.

2. Hiring managers versus doers

When starting a new business, you need hands-on doers.  For a startup, hiring employees who are not hands-on is a huge mistake.  This falls in line with why you don’t want to hire too many people.  If you have the right managers in place, who are also doers and able to get the job done, then you will see your new business quickly take off.

Once your small business grows, you can then begin to think about adding more structure to your departments. However, in the beginning, you may only find it necessary to have several people handling multiple different items.  In the beginnings of any business, there is more “doing”required versus supervising or managing.

3. Hiring people afraid of risk

In your startup, you need people who are willing to jump in and take action in order to make things happen.  You need people who aren’t afraid of change and the challenge of starting something from scratch.

In a startup, there are constant changes because you are striving towards success by adjusting to the needs of your customer. Having smart, driven people on your team is a must.  When a customer has an issue, there may be no time for your employees to go through the chain of command for every little thing.  Having someone who is able to think for themselves and make the right decisions on their own is key to your success.

4. Hiring the Know-it-all

You know the people I’m referring to.  No matter how you train them, they insist that they know more than you do and continue to disregard your company culture and training.  You want to stay away from this type of employee at all cost.

Hiring the know-it-all makes your job more difficult when you are trying to establish a new business and new company culture.  You need to look for people who have the knowledge, but are eager to learn new methods and ways of business.  These people will adjust well to change and have greater potential to do well and grow with your company.

What are some things you avoid when hiring for your startup? Please share your practices in the comments below.  

Image: monkeybusinessimages/

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Julia Weeks

Julia is a skilled Recruiter with over 8 years of experience in sourcing, interviewing, and hiring within many industries globally. She works closely with hiring managers and job seekers to understand needs and desires, while offering guidance and ensuring the right fit. When not recruiting or writing, Julia enjoys spending time outside cycling, taking her dog for walks, or honing her sailing skills.

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