Find and Keep Top Employees Through the Power of Observation


Hiring the right candidates for the right positions can be one of the most difficult aspects for any business, but finding your next top employee can be as simple as paying attention to the great service you receive then striking up a conversation with that person.

Human resource expert Darren Bateman said business owners come across potential employees every day, whether it is a coffee attendant at a local coffee shop or a friendly cashier at a grocery store. Bateman made his remarks during his session at The NATSO Show in Savannah, Ga., on hiring and retaining top employees,

“Notice behaviors or service that match what you expect your employees to exude. Then all it takes is to talk to them about their current job and possible interest in yours. That way you’ve seen the person in action and not just in an interview,” Bateman said. “They may not be happy with their current employer, you just never know.”

To help find the right candidates, Bateman recommended that operators create specific job descriptions that outline the skills and personality traits that a candidate needs to excel in that position. “Envision what you want the person to be like to be successful. The easiest way is to take your best employee in that position and write down their traits,” he explained.

He said operators should also consider how important experience truly is for the position. “Is experience the key factor when making a hire or can the job be trained as long as the person has the ability and the traits for that position,” he said. “Do you want a grizzled veteran or a rookie with all the makings of a legend that you can mold?”

Bateman said operators should focus on hiring strictly for the open position and said they don’t always have to consider whether or not the candidate has management potential. “Some people just want the job that they were hired for. They may want to be a custodian or a cashier, so hire for that position and focus them on that position.”

To attract and keep candidates, employers also want to work towards being the employer of choice. Bateman said, “How do you become the employer of choice? It could be benefits or that you have different work shifts and maybe people are looking for that.”

Employers can also recognize employees through a rewards program or by hosting different events. “It can be hard in our industry because we never close, but if you have an event, consider straddling it over two shifts so all employees can attend,” Bateman suggested.

Photo Credit: Jowdy Photography/NATSO

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