It’s one of the most rewarding aspects of leading retreats – seeing the transformation that takes place when someone opens up to an aspect of themselves that was totally hidden from them until they shifted their perspective. All of us have blind spots when it comes to our own stuff, and that’s a big part of what makes our deep work with small groups so effective.

When you’re hiring a team, the same thing is true: knowing yourself is often the most important – and most challenging – part. In the final installment of our Team Truth series, Marta and I are answering a really great question about this topic.

Our conversation is really relevant for anyone who’s ever experienced a total mismatch when it comes to working styles. Sometimes it’s when you’ve been referred a support person by someone else.

“They’re incredible!” your mastermind buddy tells you. “They managed everything on that project for me!”. And yet when it comes to your business, nothing seems to ever move forward.

Or maybe you’ve invested in support early on, so you’re ready for a big launch. But when the time comes for you to call on that help, you hear crickets.

If you’ve had these experiences (or you want to make sure you avoid them) you’re not alone. Finding the right energetic fit with the team you build as a skill fit.

So when you’re interviewing someone new, how can you make sure you’re a fit right from the start – not just in their skillset, but in your working relationship?

Marta’s giving us her juicy perspective as an online marketing whiz who’s supported dozens of entrepreneurs, and has learned a thing or two about the red flags to watch out for when you’re hiring. She sheds light on what might be really going on behind the scenes, and gives us her number one tip on making sure your support team are ready to leap into action when you need them.

This is the last in our Team Truth series. It’s been fun – especially reminiscing each time about retreating in Mexico!

If I’ve learned anything about growing a sustainable business in the last seven years, it is that we must continue to grow our muscle in being supported, and that looking to improve the skills on your team that balance yours is a continual process. Enjoy the journey!

Team Truth Series Part 5 (Of 5): Figuring Out Your Working Style

Darla: Hi, guys. Marta and Darla here one more time. We have one more question for Marta, which is the question from Renee around how do you, as a business owner, when you’re interviewing support, how do you get across what you’re skills are, what your personality is, how you like to work, so that you get a good fit in terms of work style, not just skillset?

Marta: Yeah, and as I think about it, you have to be brutally honest. You kind of have to get over yourself and look at all of the things that have gone wrong with other team fits in the past, and figure out why that happened, and be very, very honest, up front.

If you’re a micromanager, you have to say you’re a micromanager. If you’re not a details person, you have to say, “I’m not a details person.” If you are somewhere in between, where you micromanage in the beginning, but once you have trust, you can let it go. That you just have to be up front, because there is a fit for everyone.

There should be no judgement around what it is that you are or how you work. It’s a matter of finding the right fit. The right person. You have to go with your gut. It can’t be, “Oh, I like this person,” or “They have a good reputation, so I really want them to work for me, or I’ve seen the results they got for someone else, and I want that for me.” It has to be a real fit or it’s not going to work.

Darla: That’s such a great point, because people have said, “I’ve hired people that other people referred to me, and it wasn’t a good fit.”

Marta: Yes, I’ve had that happen to me, a lot. Where people will say, “Oh, I love what you did for so and so. Can you do that for me?” Yes, in theory, I can totally do it for you, but it’s not going to be a good fit if we don’t like each other, or our work styles.

Darla: Okay, what are your pet peeves about client work styles? Remember, this is one perspective, right, but I think it could be helpful, because to me, it’s an energetic dance, as well. It’s like if you’re in, just like any marketing strategy won’t work if you’re in a funky energy. If you’re trying to get someone to rescue you, energetically it’s impossible for them to win.

Like if you’re not in an empowered place when you hire someone, it doesn’t matter how great they are. It’s impossible. What are your pet peeves?

Marta: I think the biggest one, for me, is when people aren’t honest, or maybe don’t realize for themselves how it is that they are. The person who says, “I’m not a micromanager”, but is texting you eighty times a day, and still really, honestly doesn’t believe they’re a micromanager.

Because if I know what’s going to happen up front, I can prepare for it, or I can say, “Okay, this isn’t going to be a fit.” The person who says, “I’m really easy going,” but the minute something goes wrong, they’re jumping down your throat. It’s like that. The mismatch-

Darla: Awareness.

Marta: Yes. That, to me, is one of the biggest pet peeves-

Darla: Like I always say, “I’m not a details person,” and Jana says, “Yes, you are. Yes, you are.”

Marta: Yes, you are. I will second that! You totally are. The other thing is people who don’t follow through, who are just kind of like in the wishy washy indecision place of, “I don’t know. Should we do this or should we do that?” They don’t make a decision, and nothing ever happens, and I don’t know how they continue to make money, but somehow-

Darla: Maybe they don’t!

Marta: Maybe they don’t, but I mean, I’ve worked with people for months at a time, where nothing is moving forward, and that’s-

Darla: What’s that like as a support person? Because I think I’ve had clients who have told me stories of, “Well, I’ve had these in the past, and they didn’t get it done when they said.”

When I inquire more, it’s like they had that VA on retainer for three months, never gave them a single thing to do. Then all of a sudden, “I need to do a webinar next week!” – and that person’s not even in the habit of helping them, right?

Marta: Yeah, they’ve checked out.

Darla: They’re like, they’ve got another client or whatever, right?

Marta: Yeah, we check out, unfortunately. As sad as it is, we totally do. If we’re not in contact with you, and some people I will say, this isn’t … I’ve tried the whole “this isn’t working, you’re giving me money for no reason…”

Darla: Right.

Marta: “Go away. Come back when you’re ready” kind of thing. It’s very frustrating as a support person, because you want to help them. You want them to move forward. You want them to be successful, and it can become very frustrating, and you do mentally check out, and then suddenly the other person, yeah.

Darla: Yeah.

Marta: “I have a webinar next week. Come on, I want it done yesterday.” You’re just like, “Hey, I haven’t heard from you in six weeks. I don’t, you’re not on my calendar-”

Darla: Does that happen a lot?

Marta: It happens fairly often.

Darla: Yeah, so you’ve got to stay in communication, and even if you’re not using them, like regularly, let them know what you’re working on.

Marta: Yes.

Darla: What’s coming. Like I find I maybe do it too much, because I think so far ahead, but I’m always going. Like this week, here in Mexico, we made our plan for 2018, so we know what 2018 is going to bring, so now everybody knows, it won’t be a surprise when we start to do things this year to prepare us for next year. It won’t be a surprise, so you might not be at that stage yet, but make your plan for six months from now, so then they know. Even if you don’t know what the teleclass or webinar is, they know some time in May, I’m going to do something.

Marta: That’s super helpful in planning, too, because in the meantime, we’re taking on other projects. We’ve taken on other clients. Other things have filled that space, and to know, “Okay, three weeks from now, she’s likely going to do a teleclass. I need to book that into my calendar” is super helpful.

Darla: Yeah, awesome. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you, guys. Thank Marta in the Comments below, and she’s got a flight to catch! She’s got to say goodbye to her beloved beach for now, and you guys. All right. Bye.

Marta: Bye!

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