Hiring and Leadership
November 21, 2023

Blooper Reel: Hiring and Leadership Edition

Everyone loves a blooper reel. Something about revisiting our old mistakes and faux pas with the gift of hindsight gives us the rewarding sensation of growth and a lesson well learned (and maybe even a chuckle or two).

Along with the blunders and lessons learned comes the opportunity to share my experiences not only for a good laugh but also to help others avoid the same mistakes. In my ebook, My Business Blunders: Lessons in Life and Leadership I Learned Along the Way, I explore the lessons learned from my very own professional blooper reel—all of the should-haves, could-haves, and wish-I-knew moments along the way.

Being a manager and people leader is one of the hardest roles I have had to fill on my entrepreneurial journey, and the path has been full of its fair share of blunders. In my ebook, I dedicate a chapter specifically to my best (or worst, I suppose) blunders in hiring and employee leadership.

Read on for a few of the highlight lessons learned, but make sure to check out the ebook for the full experience and a full explanation of how to avoid these blunders in your own hiring and leadership processes.


Blooper #1: A Family Business

The temptation to hire your closest friends and family is a strong one to resist. It is your business after all—why not hire your friends? You should be able to hire whoever you want, right?

Yes, and no. Hiring a friend or family member to fill a necessary role or provide a needed service for which they are qualified is a rewarding experience that can bring your team closer. On the flip side, retrofitting a role so that you can hire a friend or family member can be a recipe for disaster. 

Take it from someone who personally experienced this blunder. Hiring a friend is fun. Having to let go of a friend on the other hand…

The Lesson: The process of hiring a friend or family member should start with a necessary open position in your organization. If you know of a friend who would apply for this same position organically and wants the job, you can feel free to begin with your normal vetting and hiring process.


Blooper #2: Raking It In

In small businesses, the structure of a “rake” organization is very common. This describes an organization in which the owner, CEO, or founder is the direct manager of everyone else in the organization and thereby has a bunch of spread-out lines in the org chart (like the spokes of a rake).

Understandably, this creates plenty of clogs in the work funnel. The owner needs to approve and is responsible for everything, but has time for none of it. All progress on projects and strategies is at a standstill until it can get in front of the one decision-maker in the organization. Put simply, the owner is spread too thin.

From the employees’ point of view, motivation to succeed for a potential promotion is non-existent, and the lack of empowerment can feel stifling. Without anything to strive or hope for except for the owner’s retirement, morale can get pretty low.

The Lesson: Create a level of middle management and empower this level to be accountable for some of the owner’s responsibilities. Delegation from the top and a path forward for employees will increase morale and reduce clogs in the workflow.


Blooper #3: Ready, Aim, Hire

So, you have an open position and your busy season is fast approaching. The knee-jerk reaction would be to fill that seat as quickly as possible.

Before you start skimming resumes or lining up back-to-back interviews, take a breath and remind yourself that hiring quickly can end up wasting time rather than saving it. An employee who is not qualified or is missing some of your organization’s core values will end up slowly costing the business time, resources, and profitability. 

While you might try to fix problems as they arise, the source of the problems remains the same. Instead of dragging out the pain of an ill-fit, confront the main problem head-on and cut losses before it continues to drain the company’s time and resources. An honest conversation can also free up the employee to find a better fit and explore other options.

💡Quick Tip: Remember—hire slowly, fire quickly. Even with added pressure to fill a seat, take your time in the hiring process to save you and your company time in the long run.  Remember if it appears that anyone can get hired here and no one gets fired because you feel desperate, what you end up with is a culture of people no one else wants.

The Lesson: No matter what, take your time when hiring. As a leader and a manager, building a strong and capable team is a top priority. Don’t rush through the process just because you are feeling the pressure to fill a seat.  Make sure that you first create a job that people feel blessed to have then make sure you only give that blessing to those who are qualified and want it.


Discover More Blunders and Bloopers to Avoid

My ebook, My Business Blunders: Lessons in Life and Leadership I Learned Along the Way, is full of lessons I learned through my entrepreneurial journey. Download my ebook here for your go-to guide on hiring and leadership.


Download My Business Blunders EbookLessons in Life and Leadership I Learned Along The Way

I share valuable lessons on hiring, leadership, vision, and relationships. Don't miss out on this opportunity to gain insights that will transform your business. Download the eBook now and turn your failures into stepping stones towards greatness.

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