Your New Hire Should Have These 4 Things

Small Business Hiring

The people you hire are a reflection of you and your business.

While certain positions require professional experience and skills, I don't care what the job is I, every person that I hire must have these for things.

1. A Track Record of Honesty

If I fire an employee for poor performance, it is typically within the first week that they start. If it's clear they don't have the skills they said they did, I let them go.

Other than that, I typically only fire employees for dishonesty.

I consider myself to be pretty reasonable. If something comes up, that is ok, I wouldn't fire someone for life events outside of their control.

But, I have had cases many times now where I had employees lie to me about where they were or what they were working on. Several times, I have had full time overseas assistants logging hours for me and multiple other employers at the same time (overlapping).

Everyone who works for me should be trusted enough that I can allow them to use my credit cards and log-ins freely.

If you lie about little things, I can't trust you with big things.

My business is so small that I don't need to settle for subpar, untrustworthy employees.

2. The Ability to Follow Instructions

I have no work for an employee who doesn't care enough to follow instructions.

Here is how I narrow my applicants down to only those that I believe can follow instructions.

  • Create a job description that is complete and at least longer than a paragraph.
  • In the middle of the description, put this phrase (or a similar one of your choosing)

“Since this job requires extreme attention to detail, only applicants who have proven they have this skill will be considered. Therefore, when replying to this job posting, please write in the subject: {I have read this post in its entirety and I would like to be considered}. Applicants who do not include this will not be considered for this position as they have demonstrated an inability to follow instructions. Thank you for your understanding.”

  • You can now Select an applicant with a little more confidence.

3. The Confidence to Ask Good Questions

If my team members don't ask questions, I expect something close to perfection.

I will accept less if I know they are doing everything they can to make the best decisions and provide the best work possible.

I can't always explain every detail of what it is I want each team member to do (I try to be as clear as possible) but things come up during projects that I may not have expected or that I over simplified in my head.

My teams are too small for me to have weak links who don't care to improve. Employees who are just trying to get by day by day don't work for me long.

4. A Positive Attitude

Sure, at a large corporation it's a pipe dream to only hire bubbly people, but for my micro-businesses, it is absolutely feasible.

I didn't go into business for myself to work with negative people and I'm sure you didn't either.

That's it, the four things all new hires should have.

How about you? What do you consider to be an absolute necessity in your new hire?

About the author

Nate McCallister

Nate is the founder and main contributor of He is a lifestyle entrepreneur who spends his time building businesses and raising his two kids Sawyer and Brooks with his beautiful wife Emily. His main interests include copywriting, economics and piano.

Leave a comment: