Our Most Important Asset: Our People | NAWBO

At NAWBO, we know our most important asset is our people—the amazingly talented and diverse women business owners who lead this organization and its chapters and who are part of our membership experience, voice and impact.

It’s the same in our businesses. The people who make up our organizations matter. They are the reason why our customers choose us, and continue to want to partner with us. They are also why our team members come to work for us and stay. People want to work with people they like, admire and feel supported and inspired by.

So how do you get the best people, develop them and encourage them to stay? Here’s what the experts tell us:

Over-Communicate: Create a world where they feel comfortable talking to you. They care about different things and have different ambitions, and those can change over time. You want them to know they can come to you about these things.

Hire “Friends”: It’s the harsh truth but many people in the hiring pool are unemployed for a reason, whether it be their work ethic or values. Birds of a feather flock together, so always ask your most amazing employees and colleagues if they know anyone first.

Be the Leader They Need: Top talent want to know they are “top” but also want your leadership. Many experts say to hire people who are smarter than you and then challenge them with all that you have to keep them interested, invested and challenged.

Think Values, Desire, Character: Your business needs values and to stand for something. Hire people who share your values, desire and character. People can look amazing on paper but aren’t a fit culturally. Be sure to ask questions to help you determine if someone is good all-around.

Take Your Time: When your hiring process is slow, you both get the opportunity to feel what it would be like to work together, negotiate and resolve differences. Also, consider getting to know your prospective hire in a social setting if possible.

Give Them Reason to Stay: Money isn’t everything. Same with benefits. But they are certainly important. Look at what you are offering your talent every year to make sure it’s competitive. For small businesses, it’s harder to compete with the big firms, so look at other perks you might provide, like flexibility.

Recognize the Work: Everyone likes to be appreciated and thanked for their hard work. Look for ways to catch your team doing things right. Thank them on the spot or mention them on a group call. There’s also still power in a personal, hand-written note!

Develop, Develop, Develop: No one likes the same place, same thing. Your talent will get bored if you don’t make their development a priority. Build a mentorship program. Encourage taking online classes (many are free). Consider cross-training. Also, recognize growth by promoting from within!

Lastly, promote collaboration. While we’re all strong on our own in our businesses, we’re even more powerful together—just like we are in NAWBO. Make sure your team is working together whenever possible and bringing their diversity and strengths to the table. The results will be a constant reminder of why your people matter.

—Cristina Morales Heaney
  2020-2021 NAWBO National Board Chair

Related Posts

NAWBO National Commends U.S. Senate...
July 27, 2021

NAWBO National looks forward to continuing work with SBA on behalf of women business owners....

Quality vs. Quantity in the Art of...
July 21, 2021

Scaling a business is a delicate art. As entrepreneurs, most all of us want our businesses to grow...

A Message from Our President: Quality...
July 07, 2021

During COVID, I did something a little crazy. As the pandemic was in full swing and my business...

A Message From Our President: #...
July 02, 2021

It’s June, which means summer is finally here! I don’t know about you, but I’m happy to finally...

Rooted in Advocacy
June 16, 2021

  There’s a time and place for everything, and for our #NAWBOVoice that speaks out for not only...

Leading the Way: The Ultimate Test
May 19, 2021

Whether you manage a team of two or 200, this prolonged pandemic has no doubt been the ultimate...

A Message from Our President: Leading...
May 03, 2021

Welcome to May! With spring in bloom and vaccination distribution well underway, we are beginning...

Minding the Rules
April 21, 2021

Compliance is a catch-all term for how well you mind the rules—the laws and regulations governing...

A Message From Our President: Minding...
April 07, 2021

Happy April! With some doses of warmer weather and stretches with real sunshine, I hope you are...

A Message from Our President: People...
March 31, 2021

Happy March! We are so excited (and relieved) that Spring is finally upon us! The theme this month...

Think Inclusive from the Start
February 17, 2021

The positive impacts of diversity and inclusion (D&I) are clear and run deep. In fact, we’ve...

A Message from Our President: Think...
February 03, 2021

If January wasn’t the “Fresh Start” to 2021 you were expecting, that’s okay! The beauty of fresh...

Member Spotlight: Ashley Logan
February 03, 2021

ASHLEY LOGAN Founder & CEO, Yakkety Yak   When Ashley Logan started in content marketing in...

A Message From Our President: Fresh...
February 02, 2021

Happy New Year! We can’t believe it’s already 2021, but we’re so glad to leave 2020 behind. Our...

Here’s to Fresh Starts!
January 20, 2021

“I want every day to be a fresh start on expanding what is possible.”  ―Oprah Winfrey   There’s...

Driven By Purpose
December 17, 2020

Several months into this year’s pandemic in the U.S., a Forbes article reported that a lot of...

A Message From Our President
December 04, 2020

  The days are getting shorter and colder, but we still have time left in this year. For many...

Let's Take A Retirement Test Drive
November 24, 2020

As a new year approaches, you are likely putting plans in place for your future. With the...

Positively In the Flow
November 19, 2020

  Quite simply, cash flow—the money flowing in and out of our businesses each month—is...

NAWBO Chicago Logo
As The NAWBO National Conference 2020...
November 02, 2020

To me, being Brave is being Courageous.  To meet the challenges that we face every day as business...