Do you struggle with the hiring process? Don’t you hate interviewing, choosing one person, onboarding them… only to realize it’s not gonna work out? We understand your pain!
Maybe it’s time you changed your approach to hiring and explore new ways of finding – and keeping a team growing and thriving!
Let’s dive into the mind of Holly Homer, aka the Quirky Momma and creator of Kids Activities Blog, a successful 13-year old blog that has unexpectedly opened many doors for her. Nowadays, she’s a social media expert, SEO master, runs two businesses, sells physical products, runs virtual summits and her blog just keeps growing and growing.
We interviewed her so she could share with us how she manages to find and keep a strong team after so many years together, and specifically, what it’s like to fill out a role with someone who is already part of her organization.
So if you’re ready for this eye-opening interview that will help you build a team that will scale your business, keep reading!
Why you need to learn to trust contributors
Janine: Tell us about your first experience with contributors?
Holly: It all began with my first book. My blog opened the doors for writing my book, it was a great opportunity, but then I was like, “how am I going to write a book when I have a blog to run?” That’s when I decided to hire contributors to write content for a whole summer. But when I was scheduling those posts, I kept cringing and thinking, “that’s not what I want on my blog.” But this is what I committed to doing, so I kept them. And at the end of the summer, I looked back, and statistically those did better than my own posts! This was a moment that made me realize that if I brought in more voices, I could attract a wider audience.
Janine: How did you manage to work with people you had never met?
Holly: A lot of my contributors were all across the country, or in the country, and people I never met in person, which is a little scary at first. So what I would do is, I would hire them for a project or a series of posts that had an ending to it.
Perks of hiring within your team
Janine: What made you hire someone from within your team?
Holly: I get hundreds and hundreds of emails a day. I spent a lot of my time deleting emails or unsubscribing. I needed someone to help me take things off my plate. So I realized I needed a virtual assistant again, but I just didn’t have the energy to go out and hire. Then I realized that the perfect person for that position was on our team already and I had just completely overlooked it. She’s been on the team for years so she already knows how the inner workings of the teamwork and the different people involved.
Amalie: What did she do before? And what is she doing now?
Holly: She started out doing our social media, and when she needed more hours, I brought her into my blog. She was a writer, so originally I had her writing content and social media. Now she’s my virtual assistant; actually, she’s a virtual manager because she’s having to manage me.
You know, it was kind of funny because I know how important a virtual assistant or a virtual manager is in that position. They are the absolute front line of what the customer thinks about the business.
Amalie: One of the things I advocate for is hiring people that their experience might not be in the thing you want to hire them for, but they have the personality for it. So what were the things that you recognize from her skill-wise or personality-wise that made you think she’d be perfect for this position?
Holly: Her list of skills –she has a ton of skills, which makes her a really easy fit because like I do a lot of stuff. The most important thing to me was dependability. She is someone who is completely dependable.
Advice to people who are hiring for the first time
Janine: What advice would you give them about hiring their first team members?
Holly: Hire someone for a project with a start and an end date. And tell them that if this goes well, you may have more stuff more for them in the future. One of the biggest problems we have at first when we haven’t dealt with people is being stuck with some of them long term because you feel bad about telling them that they can’t work.
A lot of times those first contractors fail. Not because the contractor was bad, but because the entrepreneur did not set them up to succeed. By giving them clear parameters for a project, that sets both sides up for some success. And then a nice conversation at the end of that to say, “Hey, that went well”, or “Hey, thank you so much. This project’s ending.”
Janine: On the other side, what about someone with the skillset looking to get hired?
Holly: If you’re just getting started and you want to get your foot in the door, one of the best ways to do this is to reach out to someone who has a team already. Probably three or four of the people that work for me right now did that. Send an email to a blogger, explain your situation, and make sure to say you are not a spammer. One of the things I thought would be good is to get some experience guest posting and attach a sample post that they can use on their blog if they put your name on it.
Once you have some content out there, share those links with the blogger. When I go click on those and see reputable sites that have your content with nice pictures and a real positive article, then it makes the decision really easy.
And that’s a wrap! We hope this has been useful to you. You can find more information about Holly and reach out to us through the channels listed below.
You can also listen to the full episode here: https://systematicexcellenceconsulting.com/podcast/
Holly’s courses: https://hollyhomer.com/courses/
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