Why WHO We Hire Should Affect WHO You Hire (Post #2 – Teaching the Talent)
Here is our Director of Marketing, Spencer Sutton, rocking out to some tunes while he is building a webpage for our new pricing plan.
Here is our Director of Marketing, Spencer Sutton, rocking out to some tunes while he is building a webpage for our new pricing plan.

In my last blog I gave you some insight into how we find talent.  Much like finding the right tenant takes tons of time and sometimes going through tons of people, finding the right talented people to work with you takes very much the same approach.

The next step in the process is training that talent.  It does us no good to find them and not have a set system for bringing them into our business and getting them up to speed on our processes as soon as possible.

So how do we do that?

We’ve basically bought into the book, Scrum.  This book is actually written to describe how software engineers can write relevant software in a much more intentional and meaningful way – thus reducing the amount of time it takes to write a software program.  We’ve decided to take the same principles the book teaches and apply it to onboarding a new team member.

The principles of of our onboarding “scrum” are this . . .

1. Decide everything that needs to be taught.  The first step in our process is to figure out all the tasks that we need to teach the new team member.  We simply brainstorm a list and put it into an excel spreadsheet or (in our case) an Asana project.

2. Decide how much effort it will take to teach the task.  We do this by scoring the task based on the Fibonacci Sequence.  It is important to determine how much effort so that we can measure how long it will take to train the person based on how much of the “score” is done on a weekly basis.  If you know how much score someone is completing, you can back into how long the training will take.

3. Decide who is responsible for teaching the task.  Once we’ve defined the task and how much effort it will take to teach, we are very intentional about who is going to transfer the information to the new team member.

4. Decide which tasks will be taught week  one.  We don’t try to measure out which weeks each task will be taught.  We simply start with week one and focus on a certain number of tasks.

5. The goal is to get the new team member operating without anyone else having to be there.  This method is only effective when we are able to move through each task to its full completion and the new team member is able to work autonomously on the task without any oversight.  This allows the person teaching the task, or whoever has been performing the task, to move on and start accomplishing other objectives and tasks for the team.

Our method for onboarding a new employee has drastically reduced the time it takes to get a team member contributing to the team (a HUGE plus for both the team and the individual) and has also reduced the overall time it takes to get them fully functional in the new role.

Next post, I’m going to discuss our ongoing leadership training designed to get our team members able to go run a new market for us.