When I started my company, for the first few years I worked alone. I was used to a daily rhythm in which I would wake up early and sit in front of the computer in relative quiet and began to take pride in my self-reliant, autonomous nature.
Then, it came time to hire someone else. I began reading management book after management book prepping for the impending employee I was going to hire.
I was lucky enough to hire a great Managing Director Alison Ringo, but after that recruiting from an apartment did not exactly attract top talent and my management style combined with inexperience could not adapt to the mentality of these individuals.
I’ve always wanted to be successful and was taught at a young age to work tenaciously to pursue your dreams. While it took a few variables for me to get better management including improving myself, here are the 3 best management tips I can give to either an entrepreneur recruiting and having to manage his or her first employee or even for a first time manager in a smaller, more entrepreneurial company.
1. The Employees’ Dream(s) May Be Different – management is going to be difficult for those who don’t learn to adapt to “troublesome” employees (those who are not on board with your vision 100%).
When I hired individuals that fit this description, they would get under my skin and drive me up a wall. I could not put myself in their shoes and their thought process became more and more foreign to me which created a disdain on both sides.
The more I tried to change these employees, the worse the situation would get. Then, a remedy came in the form of a change in mentality and perspective on my end.
I knew that I could not get better employees, therefore I looked at these individuals as means to the employees that I wanted, I gave them less important, though necessary tasks that needed to be done and I shouldered any and all workload that had to directly deal with obtaining income.
2. Learn to Interview – when I recruited my second and so-on employees, I would have to oversell the job as I was working from an apartment and had to convince people that I was a real company.
The problem was that I was selling, but not asking. Though I would never admit it, I was hesitant to ask because I felt that they would walk. Besides Alison, my Managing Director, every single one turned out to have somewhat of a grey story.
This was a story that I could have figured out had I approached asking some questions in an unassuming way, however since it took 50 phone calls to get one person to interview, I was just more than happy to have a body around me as I thought that I could mold and change.
It soon became evident that molding is possible, but changing is not. Had I learned to interview years ago, my company would be 2x the size and revenue intake it is today.
3. Interns and Free Labor Cost More Money – before I could afford employees, I had interns because they were cheap and you could get more intelligent people this way as opposed to hiring full-time employees as nobody from NYU or Columbia was going to pass up working for Goldman Sachs to work out of an apartment.
I am a very good salesman, but I could not brainwash these people to come to KAS. Therefore, I thought it would be a great idea to hire interns until the first Friday came around and it became evident that these kids did the same as I did in college which was go out until 3 in the morning every Thursday.
The productivity and responsibility level of these individuals ended up costing me an abundance of time…time I could have been making money to hire full-time employees who were going to show up.
If I was in something really sexy to these kids like marketing (I didn’t know what I know now – not a fraction on the topic nor did I have the recognition years ago), fashion or was a start-up hedge fund, that would be a different story.
It was at this time that I figured out that to get good employees as an organization, I would have to take an industry once thought of as drab and full of shady people into something meaningful and I set out to do just that.
When and How to Ask for a Promotion
Which Social Media Site is Best for Finding a Job
Ken Sundheim KAS Placement Twitter and Youtube Channel