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Expanding the team: How to prepare for it?

New projects, opportunities, goals are looming. And with them, larger volumes of work. In order to finish the projects, achieve the goals and not end up spinning around on the office chair staring into space, it’s high time to strengthen the existing team and hire new colleagues.

Expanding the team is also a great opportunity and goal. How to prepare for it, what to think about and set up? Let’s take a look at some practical tips.

Before you place ads

Before you start writing requirements for new colleagues, perform an analysis of the skills you lack in your company/team so that you can continue to grow. Involve colleagues in this discussion; they will say exactly who they need.

Tip: It goes without saying that you will try to make the new member fit in as a person. But don’t look for people who are excessively compatible with your current team. You would then create a homogeneous atmosphere that would not encourage creativity as much. You should be looking for someone to join your team who will challenge them in a positive way with new ideas, thoughts and different perspectives.

  • Once you know what knowledge and skills you expect from a new colleague, start working on a precise definition of tasks and job descriptions. Everyone in the team needs to know what they will be responsible for. It’s also a good time to review the workload of existing team members. Does anyone want to move on? Is the work in the team properly systematized and doesn’t it depend on just one person?

Try to plan the expansion of the team in advance and don’t wait until everyone is overwhelmed with work and there is an urgent need for new colleagues. Expect that finding and selecting the right assets may take longer.

Processes and communication

Processes don’t sound like much fun, but we all know that they make our work easier, especially when working in larger teams. Therefore, it is necessary to pay attention to them when recruiting new colleagues. You already know how many people you need to hire. Are existing processes well scalable and will they work with a new, larger number of colleagues? Will each team member know exactly what they are responsible for and know their KPIs?

And is everything, not just the processes, in the company set up for a larger number of people so that new colleagues can easily join? Such as communication?

If necessary, revise:

  • team meetings;
  • 121;
  • online tools and chats used for cooperation.

Set the so-called “Buddy Programme”

Connect new colleagues with existing ones so that they know they have someone they can turn to, someone they’ll know well from the beginning and someone in their team who will help them get through the first few weeks without any problems. Together with existing employees, define what their role is to be and how they should help newcomers.

Onboarding

The goal of the onboarding process is to make the newcomer feel part of the company and the team. Thanks to well-managed onboarding, a new colleague fits into the team faster, starts to feel “at home”, which increases the chances that they will stay in the company longer.

“Hire fast, fire…”

… faster. Yes, that’s what a lot of managers and entrepreneurs say based on their experience. You arrange a probationary period with newcomers; take full advantage of it. If you feel right from the start that it’s not the right fit, either in terms of fitting in the team or the required knowledge, don’t waste each other’s time. First of all, discuss everything and agree on what will be best for both parties. Sometimes, leaving during the probationary period is the best thing.

Extra tip: Think of your existing employees as well

Not only will the newly recruited colleagues end up in the unknown, the situation will also change for the company’s “veterans”. Team dynamics, perhaps even the roles, job descriptions and responsibilities, will change with new people. Your existing team has helped get your company to where it currently is, don’t leave them out and don’t forget them.

Discuss with them how they perceive the changes and the new functioning of the team. Make sure that you always manage to inform them in advance about upcoming changes, whether procedural or communication changes, anything… The main thing is to make sure they don’t feel left out or sidelined.

HR doesn’t have enough capacity?

Growing a team means, of course, an increased burden on your HR department. Therefore, consider well in advance whether it has the necessary capacities or whether it will be more efficient to contact external contractors.

We keep our fingers crossed and wish you successful teams and satisfied colleagues, both new and old.

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