Why NOT to Hire People You Can’t Fire

Attention all business owners and start-up entrepreneurs! Are you battling the task of expanding your team, hiring new members, or deciding whether to add on new roles within your company? Well, we’re sure that during the time between the start of your company and today, you’ve been faced with the opportunity (or favor) to hire a family member or close friend. While there are pros to doing so, we definitely want to make you aware of some cautions to look out for in your business model.

To Hire Close Family and Friends…?

  1. Emotional Involvement: Most likely the first thought to cross your mind when you think about walking into an office alongside your spouse, sibling, college roommate, best friend, cousin, or any other person of a close relationship is the emotional attachment. After all, these people aren’t just strangers that you met during an interview, they are some of the most important people in your life! We hope that the relationships you hold most closely to you are those that will last a lifetime. However, having the emotional capacity to leave your thoughts and feelings out of business decisions is no easy feat. Make sure to weigh the concrete, measurable value each of these people brings to your business model. Are they going to act as resources or are you going to hire additional work obligations?
  2. Superiority and Business Hierarchy: You must remember that you are, in fact, the boss of this organization. The blood, sweat, and tears implored into this operation are those of your own, and there is no one else in this world who values the success of this company in the same way that you do! For that reason, you must remain capable of implementing orders, providing direction, and ultimately offering critique to each of your employees. If you are someone who will be more uncomfortable than confident in this type of setting, think twice before adding someone you feel close to to your team.
  3. Others will Assume Favoritism: There is no doubt about it… the moment that you add a family member or friend to your team, they will immediately become the perceived favorite amongst all of your employees. Battling this assumption will not prove easy, and in some instances may lead you to feel as if you must treat this person unfavorably just to prove a point. Be cautious of this when determining which role to place your friend/family member into so as to maintain a fairly perceived environment as a collective team and company.
  4. Unequal Expectations: This point relates most closely to the employee that you are actually hiring. This person may come in with preconceived notions about how you run your business. Whether this benefits or hinders your ability to set expectations of this person’s responsibilities, it is crucial to both your and their success to set measurable and clear goals for the month and/or year. This way, there will be no room left for debate as to whether this person is performing well based off of their perception, or below the belt.

We hope that you each find yourselves in the position of hiring others at one point in your professional lives! What an accomplishment to be had, and also one that comes with a massive responsibility. Follow these guidelines and you are set to make clear cut and beneficial decisions for both yourself and your corporation.

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