Great Ideas for your Small Business:
Ask Good Clients to Meet Key Hires
When it comes to hiring key employees like a new sales or account manager, marketing chief, graphic designer, or executive assistant, it makes sense to go that extra step. Introduce your top candidates to the clients they will work with if they get the job.
This serves several important purposes. First of all, it gives the prospective employee an opportunity to meet your most important clients. It emphasizes the client relationship by involving them in the hiring process. It also gives you the benefit of another expert opinion on your candidate.
Don’t make a big deal about the meeting. Be clear that it’s an informal thing. You just want to drop by with your candidate to give everyone the chance to chat. Try to leave them alone for a few minutes so they have time for a short conversation. Give them time to form an impression of each other.
You should realize that there are small risks involved with this courtesy call. If your client feels negative about the per- son, and you end up hiring him or her, the new employee will have to work extra-hard to build the relationship. On the flip side, if your client is very impressed, you might risk losing that person to the client at some point. But I believe the risks are worth it.
When I was looking for a new research associate, I planned to introduce the top candidate to my then biggest client, my colleagues at Bloomberg Television. But, as it turned out, they had already met, as she had previously interned at Bloomberg.
Because of that, I was able to judge the quality of her work firsthand. It worked out well for everyone. They benefited from her familiarity with Bloomberg and her expertise in scouting locations and helping to produce segments for our small business show.
So, consider the benefits of introducing top job candidates to important clients. It will add considerably to your peace of mind when you are ready to make that job offer.