5 Common Hiring Mistakes Small Enterprises Make

5 Common Hiring Mistakes Small Enterprises Make

As an SMB, you’re likely working with only a few employees and that means that all your workers have to wear different hats. This implies that each of them has a significant impact on the growth and operations of your organization. You need to make sure the best people are in the right places – you can’t afford not to!

In that case, when hiring, you need to know what to do if you want to attract the right talent for the needs of your enterprise. That is possible when you avoid these 5 common hiring mistakes that small businesses make.


1. Hiring without A Clear Job Description

Hire intentionally by preparing a clear job description outlining what you are looking for in a potential employee and what they can expect from the job. Doing so has a direct impact not just on your new workers but on the entire operations of your company. Sometimes you need to start at the beginning by understanding how your current team performs before starting to write a job description.

In case you feel that your existing workforce is not achieving the results you expect, you should evaluate what needs to change and then develop a clear job description that will specify the shift to the kind of new hires you need. Avoid the temptation of leaving expectations in your head and expecting your employees to deliver on them! Employees need documentation and expectations clearly set on how they are expected to do their job beginning during the interview process.


2. Trusting Your Gut Too Much or Too Little

It is normal to have a gut feeling about someone, and it can either be negative or positive. The problem is that these gut feelings may not yield a desirable outcome during the hiring process if they are weighted too strongly into the decision making process.

Try as much as possible to evaluate each candidate according to the same criteria no matter how you feel about any of them. That is a challenge right there, to be sure, but it ensures that each candidate gets a fair shot at the opportunity you are offering. It also allows you to find someone who can deliver, work with your team, and ultimately help your entity realize success.

Still, you get gut feelings for a reason so you still need to pay attention to your instincts. If a particular candidate checks all your boxes and you still feel that something is amiss, you should consider that before hiring such an individual, but it shouldn’t be the only aspect considered. Likewise, if they don’t check the boxes you need but you have a great gut instinct towards them you shouldn’t hire them fully on that positive feeling! This is an easy way to be disappointed in the future.

The whole idea of gut feelings is a balancing act. Don’t use your gut as the only measure of a candidate, but do not ignore it altogether.


3. Failure to Try Out an Employee Before Committing

Hiring an employee capable of handling the responsibilities you hire them for is kind of the entire point of hiring. You can start by trying out a 30-day contract with a potential hire to check whether they can handle the tasks required of them or not. Inform the person that the contract is only a trial or test period and not a permanent job offer, and pay them a standard month’s salary to see how it goes.

By doing this, you can pinpoint any issues an individual is incapable of handling, misguided expectations you set or even duties you completely missed in your job description. Or, you can determine that the candidate is amazing. Either way, a 30 day trial is a great way to not overcommit to a candidate off the bat and risk facing issues soon down the road.

If the individual meets your expectations while on contract, be sure to confirm them for full-time employment so you can to maximize their potential. A deal is a deal!


4. Overlooking the Importance of Highlighting Culture

It is a fact that most people spend more time at work than with family and friends. Your potential employees will be looking for an environment where they are comfortable or one with benefits that promote a work-life balance. Failing to showcase your organization’s style and culture is one of the biggest mistakes you can make during the hiring process. Culture, in this case, includes things like flexibility, benefits, perks, and remuneration.

Your culture is a distinct differentiator, and it is worth considering when seeking the best candidates in a competitive sector or function. Take some time to review the incentives you can offer employees and ensure that you stick to your word. The values of your firm should also align with the ethics of your employees, which will result in a culture that everyone is proud of and are willing to embrace.

Note that all your workers represent your entity. In that case, if your organization seems to have poor ethics or has a previous record of public backlash for offensive behavior candidates will most likely avoid any association with it.


5. Failure to Prepare for The Interview

Of course interviewing candidates during the hiring process can be daunting and time-consuming, it is a critical part of identifying the right hires for your enterprise! Going into an interview without preparing is a mistake you should avoid by all means.

You need to prepare for each interviewing session by reviewing a candidate’s resume, putting together a set of questions, defining what you need to know from the potential employee, considering how you will respond to any questions a candidate poses, and determine how you will begin and end the interview (including your statement on next steps), among other things.



Avoiding the hiring mistakes above will enhance the potential for hiring the right candidate. Also, building a talent pool using the details herein will not only improve your hiring pipeline, but it will prove beneficial when it comes to forging long-term relationships with ideal hires.

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