Neil Shorney

De-clutter Your Marketing Space

De-clutter Your Marketing Space

Not so long ago, every shop on every high street was a specialist. As a child, I remember my mother taking me to the butcher (a family friend of many years) for meat. We’d then go to the greengrocer for our fruit and vegetables, followed by the newsagent for a magazine and the haberdashery shop for some bread (although to be fair I could never work out that anomaly – wool, thread, dance shoes, bread and cakes!) When I was about ten years old, the greengrocer started selling newspapers, which at the time I found odd, then gradually stocked more and more items of tinned goods, meat and other items. Their stock of fresh fruit and vegetables diminished and they became just another convenience store At a similar time, the butcher retired and the little shop with the bread and wool shut down and... »

How to Ensure Long Service and Motivated Staff in your Small Business

How to Ensure Long Service and Motivated Staff in your Small Business

Over the past five instalments, we’ve looked at many ways to attract, interview and recruit the right people for your business. Achieving this may be a little more involved than you’d expected, and as we’ve seen, there are risks and costs associated with recruiting effectively. It’s logical, therefore, to want to keep our new employee with the business for a long time, and to ensure motivation for many years. This vital step is overlooked by many employers, and leads to increased staff turnover and cost. This topic could form a series of articles in its own right, and it would be wrong to try and cover all points in sufficient detail in this piece, so instead, I’ll leave you with a few pointers, a few areas to think about, as you think about what you can do in your business to retain staff... »

A Small Business Guide to Employer Interviewing Techniques

A Small Business Guide to Employer Interviewing Techniques

Through this series so far, we’ve defined our employee, attracted the right candidates to submit CVs, and learnt how to screen those CVs to ensure we’re only inviting the most promising candidates in to interview. Now, we need to have a strong interview technique in order to identify the best interviewee for the job, to sell our job to the best candidate, and to manage expectations of the role. As a new leader, interviewing always feels “fun”. It did for me when I first led a sales team – I couldn’t wait to get a candidate into the company meeting room and see what it was like from the other side of the interview desk. However, I was completely out of my depth that first time. Unfortunately, even after 10 or 20 years’ experience, many managers and leaders still approach interviewing as a r... »

Screening the Curriculum Vitae (CV)

Screening the Curriculum Vitae (CV)

Last time, we discussed how to attract the right candidates for your role. The next step in our recruitment process is identifying which of the applicants from whom we receive CVs we will actually invite in. Name: Neil Shorney Current employer: Naturally Sales Ltd Relevant skills: Extensive knowledge of astrophysics, fluent in mandarin and accomplished ballet dancer Unfortunately, we can’t always rely on a CV to be an accurate summary of a candidate’s experience and skills. We need some techniques to identify which CVs are accurate, which are exaggerated, and which are simply untrue. We also need to decide what our tolerance is for inconsistency or elaboration on CVs. Just because people exaggerate their experience doesn’t make them unsuitable for the job, but we need to use a combination ... »

Attracting the Right Candidates for your Small Businesses

Attracting the Right Candidates for your Small Businesses

In the last instalment, we looked at how important it is to define the ideal employee for a role. Hopefully, as an output from that exercise, you now have a clear idea of who you’re looking to employ. The question now is: how do you attract the right candidates to fit this definition? The first step is to create your job description. You’ll use your candidate definition as an input to this description. On top of that, you need to consider that this is being written for someone who knows, most likely, little or nothing about your company, your industry or the role. Be as descriptive as possible, and take care not to exaggerate any points – there’s nothing to be gained by bending the truth to attract a higher calibre of candidate only for them to leave the job after three months because it d... »

Defining the Ideal Employee

Defining the Ideal Employee

In the last instalment, we discussed some of the problems facing recruiters in the current economic climate and, on a high level, suggested some ways we can address this. Today, we’ll look in-depth at the first stage of recruitment – defining the ideal employee. It’s impossible to complete any task successfully if you don’t clearly know what you need to achieve. In sales we set goals, in projects we gather requirements, and in recruitment we define the employee we’re looking for. This vital step in the recruitment process helps us to know what we’re aiming for, guides our CV screening and interview techniques, and allows us to set boundaries to our recruitment beyond which we will not stray. These boundaries could be desired hard or soft skills, calibre of employee, or any other metric whi... »

Why a Solid Recruitment Process is Vital When Finding New Staff

Why a Solid Recruitment Process is Vital When Finding New Staff

It’s been so long since we first heard the term “credit crunch” that the economic boom years (and the difficulty at that time of finding good job candidates) seem like a distant memory. The recession is, of course, a difficult situation for many businesses, but at least it makes our jobs easier when it comes to recruiting, doesn’t it? We only have to open a newspaper to read about the huge numbers of skilled graduates desperately looking for work, so it’ll be quick and easy to find the right people to fill our vacancies. Well… no, I’m afraid not. You see, after 10 years of recruiting graduates for sales positions, it’s no easier now than it was in the boom years when there were almost more jobs than candidates. It would be easy to imagine that we are liv... »