What I learned recruiting a team of freelancers.
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I recently hired a small team of freelancers for a regular gig working on my online business. I was swamped with applications. Here’s what I learned from sitting on the other side of the table. I hope it’s helpful.
1. Follow the Instructions
It was incredible how many people didn’t apply according to the outline in the job ad. As a result, they were ruled out immediately during the shortlisting process.
Give them what they ask for. Keep it simple. Otherwise, you’ll be out before the game has begun.
The successful candidates sent me links to samples of their work. I looked at them all. This made a huge difference.
2. Let Them Know You Care
The strongest candidates demonstrated they cared about my business. They did some simple research and crafted their applications accordingly.
I read through hundreds of applications that didn’t resonate because they were too generic. With some simple tweaks, they could have easily hit the mark. This doesn’t require a complete rewrite, just a subtle nod to the business in question.
When someone has built something from the ground up, it’s akin to their offspring. Respect that.
3. Heart Over Head
I didn’t want to hire the most qualified person. I didn’t expect them to be the finished article. I wanted to hire someone with passion that would play for the team. It’s fine to say, “I don’t know…… but I can find out.” Be human. Smile.
4. Make a Connection
People want to hire people. You can easily stand out from the crowd by making a personal connection with the hirer. Reach out via email. If they provide their phone number, give them a call to chat about the position. Immediately this creates a connection and even an element of loyalty. You can also share more information about yourself than you can get on paper.
Follow up afterward and thank them for their time. Even if you don’t get the job. Keep the door open for the future.
5. Know Your Worth
Have clear in your mind your expected rate of pay and be able to justify this. Too many candidates asked for too little. Research your field, consider your experience, and settle on something that feels right in your gut.
A note of caution – be honest about this. One candidate told me they were skilled in a particular technical discipline. A couple of clicks on the internet confirmed otherwise.
6. Get A System
Save all the details of the job. If you’re applying for lots of jobs, get a system going that works. Don’t ask them to do your admin for you by re-providing information after the job has closed. It doesn’t create the right impression.
The key is to be personable and create a genuine connection. Entrepreneurs are often looking for people they trust that they can bounce ideas off. Good luck!