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How to Solve the People Problem: Finding the Right People

| Topic:

Business Advice

by: The Flash

Part of a new series of blog posts from the Super Heroes on the LMN Support Team.

As business owners and managers in the landscape industry, we all complain about the access to skilled workers. Finding good people consistently ranks at the top of every industry survey as the biggest obstacle to success.

Turning the Problem Into Opportunity

Since the entire industry is struggling with the people problem, solving it within your company will give it an incredible competitive advantage. Recruiting and hiring superstar people will enable your company to produce quality results in less time and for greater profit.

As a company in any business, your overall company objectives need to be simple:

  • Achieve your sales goals
  • Achieve perfect quality
  • Achieve a perfect safety record
  • Reduce costs of production
  • Achieve high productivity

Your people are the most important factor in determining whether your company will meet these objectives, or fall short. The fact is that average people deliver average results, whereas great people deliver great results and will help you build and grow a great business.

Seizing the Opportunity – How Do I Find Great People?

The people problem can be overcome with a recruiting and hiring system that finds and motivates great people. Everybody on your team needs to have the right attitude and everybody needs to be a problem solver. Without problem solvers, you will never make a profit in this or any business—it’s that simple! People talk about the importance of motivating people all too often, but the truth is that great people motivate themselves. As a business owner you progress further and faster by investing your efforts into finding the right people who are self-motivated, rather than trying to motivate people who can’t find it in themselves to solve problems and work effectively. If there is one lesson, I have learned over the years it would be this: you cannot change people!

Recruiting the Best in the Business

A highly skilled team using efficient production systems will create opportunities at every turn, and by using a recruiting system year round, you continuously create opportunities for your company to grow and improve.

Where to Recruit –The more ads you place, the more diverse group of candidates you’ll get. Make sure you include the following resources in your recruiting strategy:

  • Association websites
  • Association publications
  • Government Job banks
  • Online classified websites (e.g. Kijiji, Craigslist)
  • Local newspaper classifieds

Be aware of the opportunities that exist by hiring outside the industry. For example, landscape construction firms should advertise directly to the building trades to find well trained, highly skilled mature workers. Similarly, snow and ice contractors are wise to recruit in agricultural areas to attract farmers with winter downtime. More and more larger contractors are hiring financial or HR specialists from outside the green industry.

When to Recruit –

The best time to start recruiting is late in the winter or a few weeks earlier than the competition. The long-term benefit of hiring the best of the available labor pool far outweighs the extra cost of a few weeks’ salary.

How to Recruit –

  • Make your job postings descriptive and interesting. You need to attract the best candidates, not just any person seeking employment.
  • Screen applications and send out pre-interviews.

In my experience, some candidates won’t even return the pre-interview questions so that lets you know right away that they are not the perfect candidate for the job. If someone takes the time to fully fill out the pre-interview form and puts some time and dedication into it then you know that they have the drive and determination that you are looking for.

The People Opportunity

Every time a person leaves your organization, you have an opportunity to improve your company. Don’t underestimate the importance of great people in building a winning company. A recruiting and hiring system will maximize your company’s potential and turn your competitors’ biggest headache into your company’s greatest asset.

Do You Need Professionally Built Processes?

LMN offers its members access to an extensive library of professional hiring procedures. If you don’t have the time or the skills to build your own systems, then consider professionally built solutions that already exist. You’ll save time, money, and you’ll leverage the expertise of already proven systems. Some examples for you to use now here:

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