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Equal Opportunity Magazine, launched in 1968, is a career-guidance and recruitment magazine offered at no charge to qualified African American, Hispanic, Native-American, and Asian-American college students and professionals in career disciplines. Equal Opportunity empowers readers to move ahead in their job search and/or current workplace environment.

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 Four Talent Recruiting Tips for Managers & Entrepreneurs

When you operate a small business or manage a team, every team member matters greatly, and an open position can drastically impact your production. And as a manager, entrepreneur or small business owner, you're beyond busy - and that isn't likely to change.
One moment, you’re serving as a salesperson, trying to close that new piece of business. The next, you’re playing service rep and solving a buyer’s problem or doing executive tasks like running to the bank to sign loan documents. Add to these roles more selling, more service and more managing.
Suddenly, your best employee gives notice. So, as busy as you are, how will you find time to recruit, interview, hire and train a replacement - especially when there’s stiff competition for quality employees?
The internet leveled the playing field, and now your company and all others - big and small - are able to reach top talent. However, this is straining an already tapped-out talent pool, and has left many small business owners, entrepreneurs and managers searching far and wide for talented and resourceful job candidates.
It’s critical to find and have smart, resourceful talent capable of keeping up with the fast-paced dynamics that come along with a small company.
Luckily, fitting hiring into your already busy day isn't that complicated - it just requires a few easy adjustments."
Follow these four steps to find superior job candidates more quickly and easily, and to make hiring more efficient than ever:
1. Leverage the Most Productive Streams of Talent. Asking for referrals and networking with other business people has long been a highly effective way to locate talent.
In fact, business owners who carve out time each week for networking and referral generation discover a secret: the labor pool isn’t as tapped out as they originally thought. They simply weren’t taking a disciplined approach to recruiting.
2. Actively Share the Talent You Discover with Other Business Owners. Keep in mind that you’re not going to be able to hire every great candidate you meet. Sometimes talented candidates just aren’t the right fit for your company, and other times, all of your positions are filled. When this happens, be sure to share candidates with other business owners to help them solve their own hiring challenges; they’ll also be happy to reciprocate.
Business owners who share talent in this manner with at least eight or more businesses report greater success in hiring faster and making better hires.
3. Conduct Hands-On Interviews. The standard approach to hiring is to conduct interviews where candidates talk about work. Not only is this a huge drain on time, it's also an inaccurate way to assess whether a candidate fits your job. That's why many have turned to doing hands-on interviews, in which they experience the candidate doing sample work.
For example, if it’s for a sales role, then the candidate joins you on a sales call. If you’re hiring for a customer service role, then the candidate can help solve a customer’s problem.
By watching the candidate in action, you save time while also making a more accurate assessment of whether or not someone is a good fit."
4. Line Up Key People before You Need Them. Some roles are more vital than others, and when these roles are left unfilled, they can harm your business. Plus, the extra work usually falls on your already overflowing plate.
Instead of waiting to start recruiting until an employee in an essential job quits or gives notice, do yourself a favor and recruit ahead of time. Dedicating 30 minutes to recruiting each week pays off by creating a pipeline of potential talent ready to be hired the moment that vital job becomes open.
Hiring cycles don’t always happen at the best time, but when they do, you must dive right in and locate talent that will keep your company thriving. If you’ve maintained viable contacts via networking and referral generation, then you’ll be able to locate and hire exceptional talent faster than you might expect - even in an overtapped labor pool. Then you can get back to your regular tasks and help your company stay strong.
– Scott Wintrip
About the Author: Hiring expert Wintrip is the author of High Velocity Hiring: How to Hire Top Talent in an Instant. He’s also built the St. Petersburg, FL-based Wintrip Consulting Group, wintripconsultinggroup.com, a global consultancy, over the past 18 years. For five consecutive years, Staffing Industry Analysts, a Crain Communications company, has awarded Scott a place on the Staffing 100, a list of the world's 100 most influential staffing leaders. He's also a member of the Million Dollar Consultant Hall of Fame and was recently inducted into the Staffing 100 Hall of Fame.
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