Managers: How hiring is just the tip of the iceberg

by Chance Smith

For a great culture and a team that brings results, hiring is just the beginning. Yet, let’s start there.

Insert crude iceberg sketch here.


Yes, we should be hiring the best we can find. We want someone that fits well with us. Yes, fits well with our team’s morals and lifestyles. We want great talent.

Yet, for the sake of the business we need a better culture fit.

Let’s dive in…


How we onboard and train team members is essential to how that person will perform and respect the leadership in our companies.

  • Automate as much of the training as you can with videos and concise one page guides.
  • be present until the new hire feels acclimated to each task in their role
  • be sure they know what to do, how to do it, when to do it, and why it get’s done (start with the why: why, what, when, how, )

Example: “We want to keep labor costs under 20%. If we don’t, none of the team gets their financial incentives at the end of the month. So, Josh, sometimes there is a high labor in the evening. When the flow of customers starts to slow down, go back and look at your hourly sales for the past few hours and your labor percentage. If sales have been under $500 per hour, and your labor percentage is rising, ask one of the team members to leave early. I would say something like, ‘Hey Billy, our flow of customers as slowed down and our labor is rising. You’ve done a great job today and have been here the longest. Go ahead a clock-out and we’ll see you tomorrow.’ Does that make sense to you? Do you have any questions, Josh?”


Give specific affirmation for results you want repeated. Give affirmation in earshot of other team members. Make your complement in public. If there is respect for the person giving the complement, great results will spread like a wildfire.

Example: “Jessica, thank you so much for cleaning the back room shelves. Not only did you do it without being asked, but you were meticulous and organized. I think everyone will benefit by being able to find everything quickly. I walked in and was amazed at the wonderful job you did. Thank you.”


When completion of a task is expected of a team member, and the team member knows the important parts [why,what,when,how], we must keep them accountable to their responsibilities. Check in often enough to be sure the work is getting done.