“Our desire for you at Business Laid Bare is to be able to onboard team members confidently, have them get with your program fast, and for you to spend more time doing what you can only do, rather than having to babysit or to wonder if things are being done and to your standards.”

Veronica Yanhs

CEO, Business Laid Bare

Episode Summary:

As a business owner, your time is precious, and making a new hire can bring immense value to your schedule and your business, but is your business ready to hire?

Today, I am joined by our terrific operations strategist, Terri M. LeBlanc, to discuss the intricacies of the hiring process and how to use onboarding to ensure the best outcome for everyone involved! 

Terri and I share the top three things that are necessary to prepare your business for hiring. We unpack how a good project management system is essential for delegating with confidence and why having a central knowledge base for your business will empower team members to be resourceful and thrive in their roles. We also share our specific tips for a great onboarding process and offer advice for making yours as comprehensive and helpful as possible. 

I love having Terri on the show – almost as much as I love having her on our team! Join us today for this essential episode on how to ensure your business is ready to take on new hires!

What You’ll Learn From This Episode:

  • [02:46] Why hiring can be such a vulnerable experience as a business owner
  • [03:01] Why Veronica wants listeners to get excited about hiring in a beneficial way
  • [03:30] Understanding that your business might not be ready for new hires, even if you are
  • [03:56] The importance of hiring someone you trust
  • [05:15] How to have systems in place that allow your new hires to thrive
  • [05:56] Why today’s episode is all about freedom, trust, and integrity
  • [07:40] Introducing our top three favorite things for preparing your business for new hires
  • [07:58] Our first favorite thing: Good project management
  • [08:59] Why creating visibility with project management tools can facilitate trust in new hires
  • [10:18] The importance of understanding how employees engage with project management tools
  • [11:20] How good project management enables you to delegate with confidence
  • [13:35] Learn why businesses aren’t always good at utilizing project management tools
  • [15:07] Why a project management system needs to make sense for everyone involved
  • [16:45] Our second favorite thing: A knowledge base
  • [17:45] How a knowledge base functions as a reference for your team members
  • [20:37] How Business Laid Bare uses apps like Loom and Notion to support their knowledge base
  • [24:47] Key insights on how to build a valuable knowledge base
  • [25:11] Our third favorite thing: having an onboarding training experience or system in place
  • [25:56] Why creating an onboarding process is so crucial for making your business hiring ready
  • [26:41] How to use the resources provided by the programs you use to train new hires.
  • [28:40] Creating an onboarding process that isn’t overwhelming
  • [30:32] How Business Laid Bare includes feedback and iteration in their onboarding process
  • [32:35] Advice and tips for constructing an onboarding process

Connect with Us: 

Resources Mentioned:

“Having a good project management system allows you to be productive, allows you to audit when things are not going well and also, allows you to lean on the system, rather than keeping all of these deadlines, tasks, and what have you, in your head.”

Veronica Yanhs

CEO, Business Laid Bare

Terri M. LeBlanc is Business Laid Bare’s Woman Behind the Curtain. As our Operations Strategist, her beautiful brain is dedicated to smoothing out processes and finding the most efficient way for your team and tools to work together. Terri is also one of three women owners of Swamp Fox Bookstore, an independent bookstore in Marion, Iowa. In her spare time, she spends copious hours with her books, 2 cats – Selene and Simon, horse – Jezebel, and her husband.

Terri M. LeBlanc

Operations Strategist, Business Laid Bare

Episode Transcript

EPISODE 14

[0:00:01.5] Veronica Yanhs: Hey, I’m Veronica Yanhs and I’m obsessed with back-ends, specifically, your business back-end: your operations. I’m the CEO and founder of Business Laid Bare, we’re a digital operations agency that builds well lubricated and Orgasmic Operations ™  so that your business is pleasurable, productive, and ultimately profitable, because when you feel good, everything else feels good too, like your team, your customers, and your bank account. I mean, who doesn’t want to consent to that? This podcast gives you the tips, interviews, and mindset shifts on how to run your business and its operations so that it’s immensely pleasurable, productive, and profitable. Ready to whip your business into shape with me? 

Let’s get it on.

[0:00:48.6] Veronica Yanhs: Now, I have to say that bringing you on to the Business Laid Bare team has been amazing, Terri. So, before we even get started with this episode, I just have to say thank you and maybe I’m paying myself a compliment by setting the business up for success, which is why I want to talk about what we’re going to talk about today and the fact that you’re here will totally help contribute.

[0:01:11.0] Terri M. LeBlanc: I should interview you in the podcast, asking you how you knew it was time to hire me?

[0:01:17.0] Veronica Yanhs: Gosh, I mean, I could just give the answer right now. Cobbler’s shoes. You know how a cobbler would make like really great shoes for other people but their shoes themselves would not be so great. That was me and it didn’t feel like high integrity whatsoever because integrity is so important to me and in my business and so I’m like, if I am telling my clients to create good operations and document great good processes, I need to do that myself and so I realized that I was also neglecting that because I was so focused on helping everyone else grow that I’m just like, I was making the excuse of well, I can always get to it because the time it takes me to create something like this – obviously, this is why people come to us.

[0:01:58.1] Terri M. LeBlanc: Right.

[0:01:58.7] Veronica Yanhs: Is a lot faster, right? That excuse needed to stop because I was feeling icky and therefore I was like, “Hey, Terri, I need you” This is a perfect lead-in because hiring is so brilliant for businesses, despite all of our – I will speak for myself, controlling nature, I like to call it hands-on by the way. Proactive, controlling, hands-on nature, our business is so close to us, I don’t want to say our business is our baby but it’s just like our treasured gem. To give up that control, to have that much trust in other people.

[0:02:41.2] Terri M. LeBlanc: To share the dream, can somebody else share that dream, do they see that dream the same way you do?

[0:02:46.0] Veronica Yanhs: Yeah. It’s a very vulnerable experience. At least for me. I just wanted to spend today talking about and helping you dear listeners get excited about hiring but also, be able to hire in a way that’s beneficial. Constantly, we’re hearing from our clients and prospective clients and just all around the Internet that “Hey, I’m ready to hire because I don’t want to do all the things” which you shouldn’t because that’s a one-way ticket to burning out and stressing out and feeling resentful.

To being able to bring on team members that actually will help the business. Today’s episode is all about, yes, you may be ready to hire but is your business and if you feel like it maybe not, we’re going to give you the top three things that Terri and I feel are really important to bring on team members into your business in a way that actually supports you because by prioritizing systems that actually support the business, everyone benefits, especially you and then there are your team members and your customers.

What we don’t want for you is when you bring on someone to not trust them. I feel like there’s like this dark side of hiring and bringing on team members that doesn’t really get talked about. We best talk about it because we want you to run a pleasurable, productive and ultimately profitable business. We got to air out the closet where things might be hiding.

[0:04:18.5] Terri M. LeBlanc: Right, there’s a dark side to almost everything in life, in order to make something better, you have to look at the not so, sunny side of life.

[0:04:26.6] Veronica Yanhs: Yeah, things like, feeling like a glorified babysitter. That just sounds super stressful and that’s what a lot of our clients have come to us saying. They’re like, I bring on these team members, why is it that I have to feel like I’m a helicopter parent or I have to follow up behind them and make sure that they’re actually doing their job and checking in?

It’s almost like, I’m doing two people’s jobs now while wasting money because I’m paying somebody else just to redo their work later. Some of it, sure, could be like your perfection is showing but I’m also willing to gamble on it being that there aren’t any cohesive systems that set everyone else for success to help you trust your team members and to help them feel confident, taking work off your plate.

[0:05:15.8] Terri M. LeBlanc: Part of that comes from having documentation or something that somebody can follow when you’re not around. I think a lot of times, we forget that people learn in different ways that not everybody can learn by just watching somebody do something once or some people learn better by reading or for me, it’s like, show me how to do it and then let me do it.

Just let me go off and try it. I am one of those people that will scan instructions and then go try it. I have to have that hands-on experience when I’m learning something otherwise it just doesn’t stick.

[0:05:47.2] Veronica Yanhs: Absolutely.

[0:05:48.4] Terri M. LeBlanc: It’s important to acknowledge that when you do hire someone that they may not learn in the same way that you do or did. 

[0:05:56.1] Veronica Yanhs: we’re going to talk about that as part of our three things or the three systems that we believe you really need to have in place so that things feel really good. Our desire for you at Business Laid Bare is to confidently be able to onboard team members, have them get with your program fast rather quickly, and to spend more time doing what you can only do, rather than having to babysit or to wonder if things are being done and to your standards. This is why this episode is so important because this episode is about freedom and trust and integrity.

[0:06:32.9] Terri M. LeBlanc: I just have Braveheart in my background, in my head now.

[0:06:37.7] Veronica Yanhs: Because it was that good? It was that good?

[0:06:39.5] Terri M. LeBlanc: When you say the word freedom, I always think of that scene in Braveheart where he’s just screaming it at the top. That’s how I want to feel every day when I do my job. I’ve got the freedom, you know? That’s what this will do, right? If you got all your systems in place, you’ll be able to run out into the world and take that vacation or give somebody that project because they understand your business, they understand the culture, they understand the branding, the voice of it and they can just run and make it their own with the understanding of what your business is about.

[0:07:14.7] Veronica Yanhs: This is good.

[0:07:15.9] Terri M. LeBlanc: Freedom for everybody.

[0:07:17.7] Veronica Yanhs: Almost as like, maybe this is a pseudo interview for you as well because our partnership has been really great and so it’s like, how can we just lend some insight, oftentimes, our clients are like, how do you run things? You know, we want to set a good example as to how good operations are run.

Maybe it’s a pseudo interview for you as well. Okay, enough of me babbling. Let’s get into the top three things that we believe you need to have in your business so that you can make your business onboarding, hiring ready because we know you are but we want to make your business hire ready as well. Let’s kick-off number one.

[0:07:59.0] Terri M. LeBlanc: Our favorite thing.

[0:07:58.9] Veronica Yanhs: Good project management. Yes, this is your favorite thing. Also, my favorite thing as well but also, we’re biased because we’re also project managers but having a good task in project management system is a no-brainer. You cannot tell me that you can run a business well, without having good project management.

Also, we’re going to be using the word systems a lot. If this is the first time you’re listening to us, hello, or not. It bears repeating. At least at Business Laid Bare. The definition of a system is the people, the process and the tools all working collectively together to achieve a specific result or goal repeatedly. That repeatedly, that consistency is important because having a system you can depend on to give you consistent results is important for trust and standards.

Let’s talk about why a task and project management system is important for any business to have when it comes to making their business hire ready.

[0:08:59.8] Terri M. LeBlanc: One of the first things it offers is visibility and to what’s going on in the business and the nice thing is that you can – most project management tools you can give as much or as little visibility as you want and one of the things we work on with our clients is setting goals, whether that’s financial goals or goals to have our product launch, something like that, to have the team to be able to see that and see who is responsible for what, automatically builds trust.

You have the ability to see that right there in a project management tool.

[0:09:30.7] Veronica Yanhs: There’s really good accountability built-in, to see things that the person you hired is assigned. It allows you, to just be really objective. Are they marking their tasks complete? Or are they just getting piled up with tasks and faster than they can complete it. If that’s the case, well, it’s not like they’re necessarily doing a bad job, it’s allowing you to audit like maybe you’re piling too much on them at once or maybe you assign them something that’s actually more difficult than what you first imagined.

I think this could be an easy 10-minute task and actually, there’s so much more detail missing that they need to spend two to three-plus hours on it and there is no way that you know that unless you have a transparent conversation.

[0:10:18.5] Terri M. LeBlanc: It could also be that they’re getting the task done and we’ve run into this. Somebody’s getting the task done, right? They don’t like the tool or the way they see things and the tool. They just ignore the tool and that’s an important piece of this too is that you have to understand, not only higher team learning but how they operate, are they like Mekaila who is on our team, they love checking things off of lists like that – they get a thrill out of that. Are they somebody that would rather just quietly get the task done and then like once a week, go in and check everything off and provide updates. 

[0:10:52.3] Veronica Yanhs: Oh my gosh, I can’t do that.

[0:10:54.2] Terri M. LeBlanc: I can’t either. I mean, it’s in every couple of days probably but I’m always going into our favorite tool, ClickUp at making notes. Even to myself, I’ll leave notes, this is where I left off or you know, here’s the link for this just so that I don’t’ have to remember the next morning before the coffee kicks in what exactly I was doing what I left up at the end of the day.

[0:11:15.4] Veronica Yanhs: When you hire people, when you bring them into your business, their job is to ship, their job is to get things done, right? That’s why you hired somebody so that you can often delegate, work that otherwise you would be doing. Having a good project management system allows you to be productive, allows you to audit when things are not going well and also, allows you to lean on the system, rather than keeping all of these deadlines, tasks and what have you in your head, that’s got to be so stressful. I want you to have so much creative space in your brain to innovate, to do what you need to do and also, it gives that person that you’re delegating work to a chance to not flail. 

When you have all the work that they need to do, hopefully, for the day, for the week, planned out, you are being a good boss, you are being a good manager and they feel confident because then they can self-pace.

[0:12:18.5] Terri M. LeBlanc: Yeah, they have someplace to go to find out work they don’t have to constantly bug you, be at least one layer of that, feeling that some of our clients have had where they just feel like they’re babysitting and have to tell everybody what to do.

Just go here, this is where it’s at and if you have questions then let’s have the conversation on that task or have that conversation in Slack or whatever it might be.

[0:12:39.8] Veronica Yanhs: It’s really easy to constantly like Slack people, “Hey, can you do this, can you do this?” Of course, they’ll likely say yes. If you do that, then they don’t have one place to go. You have to create a process for yourself to be able to be consistent so that they’re not sifting through emails, text messages or what, however, it is you all communicate to look for task that you need to be doing because I truly believe that people are good people.

I don’t want to just get hired to do a bad job. I truly believe people want to impress you and to do a good job and if you are a really good boss, they have no reason to sabotage. When things are not working or when they’re failing, we have to address this right away because this is not a good start if especially if they’re new. You don’t want it to be stressful.

[0:13:29.3] Terri M. LeBlanc: No. 

[0:13:29.4] Veronica Yanhs: What was really great about our project management system when you first started?

[0:13:35.5] Terri M. LeBlanc: You had one. You used it. I’ve been on both ends of the spectrum where I’ve had in one position, I had to help implement a project management tool that is just in general not a strong project management tool and nobody wanted to use it because it was so clunky but it was one of the only ones the time that was at an enterprise level.

They’ve also been in where I come in and they’ve had a project management tool and they knew that I was a project manager, that’s why they hired me but nobody wanted to use the tool and I would come away for us to view things or see things or present things in ways that people could see them in different ways or create specific projects or whatever, nobody used it which as a project manager planning launches and nobody is using the tool, you have no idea what to tell anybody during weekly meetings, where are we at this?

I don’t know, nobody’s asked the task so we have to go to the task list first. I think that’s a nice thing and we have – this is like barely a clear idea. 99% of the time, there’s always going to be a slip up where it’s just easier to quickly say something in Slack, right?

Most of our paper trail is on a task. We can always go back to the task and we have a pretty clear hierarchy in there to find things if we’re like, “We did this for this one client” we know we can go back to those tasks and find that paper trial and see that there and use that as a reference. It’s not sifting through hundreds of slack messages.

[0:15:03.8] Veronica Yanhs: We talk a lot. 

[0:15:05.4] Terri M. LeBlanc: Yeah, we do.

[0:15:07.5] Veronica Yanhs: That’s great. I love that we communicate so much but you touched upon something earlier that I didn’t bring up that was so important. Yes, a project management system is great. Remember, I’m not just saying tool, I’m saying, a system as a whole. It has to make sense for the people involved and I know it takes a lot of work because it means that you have to dig much deeper than just the surface level of an app, you’re truly understanding, okay, how is it that I visualize information.

How is it that I do my best work? Do I need to see my task as a list, do I want to see everything all at once so that I can sort and organize what I’m going to do today, tomorrow, et cetera, but at least know, hey, in a month’s time, this is coming up on my plate that I can plan for or maybe just even knock out if I’m really good at what I do or I’m efficient.

Being able to create a system that makes sense will get a lot of buy-in from people. If it intuitively makes sense – and this is where our people-first philosophy comes in – we want to create systems that feel intuitive for the users. It’s a lot of not just saying “Hey, you should use our favorite app or you should use this” It’s like, “How do you thrive? How do you work, what do you need to see? What is going to cause you to procrastinate?” We get to know you on a human level. 

If there’s anything that we could take away from this project management system is before you start picking the apps, really understand what is it that you need the system to do for you and then we look at the bells and whistles, like the features.

Which brings us then to thing number two to make your business like hire ready is a knowledge base. You’re all smiles, I love this.

[0:16:55.0] Terri M. LeBlanc: These are the things I love, it’s all information. It gives the staff a place to go when they have questions. That could be, how to do something, it could be, how to answer a customer’s question, it could be any number of things can be in there, it can just be a warehouse of templates we use so I think that’s a neat thing.

A knowledge base I think when some people hear that, they might think, when you go to a website and they’re looking for help section, right? You can solve your own problem, this is like this but almost a higher level from the standpoint of you’re going to provide other things besides a step-by-step SOP of how to do something. 

We’ve even in the few months that I’ve worked with you, Veronica, have made that shift, this is more than a bunch of how to, right? 

[0:17:45.0] Veronica Yanhs: Yeah, it’s all about your second brain. I like to think of the knowledge base as the business brain and especially when you’re starting out, whether you’re solo or you have a team of five and under. Most of the stuff lives in your head, right? Because you’re in the thick of it, you’re in the day to day, you’re working with your team members, you’re communicating how to do something but as your business grows or as you take on more CEO things that only you can do, you’re not always going to be there.

You don’t want to be that bottleneck. You don’t want to be the one thing holding everything together because then it means that the team is dependent on you for them to succeed and that’s just going to stress you out because what if you’re at a conference or on vacation and somebody doesn’t know how to do something? That’s client work, that the clients paid you for and that this could mean that you’re going to miss the deadline or something. 

Having a knowledge base is about again, freedom. It is freeing everybody to be able to do their job confidently because I’ve had enough times where someone is like, “Do this” and you know, I go to Google University and we figure it out but it is also not the best thing. Being resourceful is great but if you don’t get a sense of the standards that are expected from you, my performance is not going to be predictable or I won’t be confident doing the work. Having a good knowledge base is about information. 

[0:19:09.7] Terri M. LeBlanc: Just to add onto that Veronica is if you don’t have a knowledge base, it can also create a distantness between the person giving the work and the person doing the work because you don’t understand what the expectations are and so you do something as the employee and you think, “Oh my god, this is amazing. This is wonderful! Oh my god, I have done my best work yet” and you go to the person that gave it to you and they’re like, “That’s not what I wanted” but you didn’t know from the start what the person wanted because they just said, “Do this.” 

Then you go to Google or whatever it is and do it and then that affects the self-confidence and the trust between everybody. 

[0:19:44.4] Veronica Yanhs: Yeah. We don’t really like to place blame but if we were to place blame it would have to be the person giving that task, right? Because you in your mind have a way you want something done or have an end result you want to see and the way that you communicate it might be like A but the way that that person receives it might be completely different like D but yet at the same time, they felt like they really understood you. 

Having a knowledge base allows that predictability, that consistency and that stability to be there because when you are predictable, it lends itself to a lot of routine because at the end of the day, I feel like human beings are very much like routine creatures. It’s like knowing what’s to come and I’m not saying turn your employees into robots. That’s not it at all but giving them some sort of footing. 

[0:20:36.2] Terri M. LeBlanc: A good foundation. 

[0:20:37.7] Veronica Yanhs: A foundation allows this to happen, so we use Notion as the tool and of course Google Docs and Loom videos and all of our ClickUp task but everything is centralized in Notion. That is the tool to make our system work, so the people are the team members using it. The processes, anytime we create any document, SOP, template like I even have a document that I tell people that I create and they’re like, “Oh my god, you put something like that in a knowledge base?” I’m like, “Yeah, of course.” It’s anytime there is a price change to the Business Laid Bare offering, I have a bulletin list of everywhere I need to change the price point on so that there is consistency. 

If I increase the price by $10 or whatever it is or a $100, I know to go into like Acuity where I ask a question about our offering or I go to Dubsado where we have our invoices and our contract and I also update it on our website, right? Things like this information and if in the future I need something updated and I am not there to update it, somebody on the team can take care of it.

[0:21:44.2] Terri M. LeBlanc: Yeah or you have too much on your plate and you need somebody to do it, then they’ll refer to this and you can do it. I think also what a knowledge base helps you to do is it provides you with guard rails, right? It also allows the staff to be creative, more creative because they aren’t maybe totally stressed about just getting the task done. They can see, “Okay, this is what I need to do” and maybe they see a better way to do it or they see another way to do it, then you can have that dialogue and that conversation because you know what the basis is.

[0:22:11.8] Veronica Yanhs: Yes, I love that. I am always open to when you’re like, “Hey, this can be done better” or “Why are you doing it this way?” and often times when you ask me that I’m like, “Oh, something is going to blow my mind” I’m excited but we wouldn’t be able to have this conversation Terry if there is no starting point. When it comes to your knowledge base and if you are thinking this, what are we going to do with Google docs, right? 

We love Google docs, we love Google drive, we absolutely love it and Notion is just so much more user-friendly for us and easier to search because when you search your Google drive, it’s like unless you know how to filter really well, everything is going to show up with that title or that search phrase. We create a lot of our content like I said in Loom videos, with Google docs, ClickUp task, it just gets centralized to notion and sometimes we create documents in notion when it’s really internal. 

We create things in Google docs when we know we’re going to share it with our client or it requires Google docs in sheets and presentations like functionality that we can’t get anywhere else. I’ve set some boundaries on how do we know where to create it and then where to put it in Notion.

[0:23:24.5] Terri M. LeBlanc: Of course, you’ve created a processed document for that.

[0:23:27.2] Veronica Yanhs: We created an SOP, standard operating procedure on how to write SOPs. It’s so meta. 

[0:23:34.5] Terri M. LeBlanc: Where do you keep them when you’re done with them? 

[0:23:36.0] Veronica Yanhs: Yes, thanks to Miro. We’re doing a lot of app dropping today because it’s like there are tools but there are important tools that help our system work and the system for the knowledge base is all about information, making it easy for people to be resourceful. That’s the end result for me, taking information out of our brains and documenting it so that if I am sick or if you’re sick, we can each help each other out without the business coming to a halt. 

[0:24:06.8] Terri M. LeBlanc: Yeah. 

[0:24:08.2] Veronica Yanhs: So takeaways, action items for the knowledge base. If you want to make your business hire ready, it is important to have a knowledge base. Figure out if it’s in drive, even Notion or even in your project management app like ClickUp or Asana allows you to house documents like sure, you have to create somewhere else but at least it is some essential place to look, start thinking about what it is that you want your next hire to take off your plate and that is where you should start creating documentation, so templates, standard operating procedures, checklist or just ways of work, so reference documents.

[0:24:47.8] Terri M. LeBlanc: A great place to start and sometimes you think, we’ve mentioned this before, can seem overwhelming to get that started but it could be – I am actually doing this for a client I’m working with right now where I started building something and then like, “Well, we want to know how to maintain this later” so now every time I get on to work on their project, I’m making little Loom videos for them of the stuff that I’m doing so that they can refer to that later. 

[0:25:11.4] Veronica Yanhs: I love it. All right, so then item number three of what you need to make your business hirable is a team onboarding and training experience or system. Now, I will fully admit Terri, when I brought you on I did not have this. It was on my mind but I just couldn’t get away from my business to take the time to do it. I did create it for Mekaila and ever since I created it for her, I’ve been able to duplicate it or like work on it but let’s talk about why this is so important for making your business hiring ready. 

[0:25:46.3] Terri M. LeBlanc: Oh my god, I think it is even more important now in the virtual world that we live in. I’ve had a few jobs that I’ve started in, there is always that weeklong orientation and you fill out all the paperwork and all of that and then you’re kind of in the job and when you’re working from home or in a virtual office, you don’t have the ability necessarily to absorb the culture of the business in the same way. You don’t necessarily get to go out for lunch, you know? 

Those kinds of things and so when we started building the onboarding process for Business Laid Bare, we try to somewhat encapsulate that in an easy to digest format. We know there is always going to be learning processes as people get chatting in meetings but at least to give people the feel of and to give them power to learn on their own. 

[0:26:39.7] Veronica Yanhs: Yeah, I love it.

[0:26:41.3] Terri M. LeBlanc: I think the biggest thing is that you don’t have to reinvent the wheel. I think that’s one thing that you and I discovered is if we figured it is in tool A has a really great video about how to use their tool, then send that person your new hire to watch that video or read that document. Just create a document about how you use that tool. I mean I think the big example we always use is Slack, right? We send people to Slack, knowledge base learn how to use the tool but the bit that we share with them is how we specifically use the tool that might be different than another company might use it. 

[0:27:16.0] Veronica Yanhs: Absolutely, who better to write this documentation than the people that created this business? For us, we give them a link, sure to send to Slack but then like we’ll say, “Hey, oftentimes we just want to communicate in ways that are not text friendly, so put this emoji with the two eyes to show that you’ve seen it but you just don’t have time to respond or just don’t want to.” You don’t have to do anything you don’t want to do. 

We’re okay being patient but then it just lets everyone know like, “Hey, I’ve got this” and then whenever you can respond you are going to respond. Things like green checkmarks because sometimes I inevitably are like, “Hey, since we’re having this conversation, oh by the way, if we’re having this conversation can you do X?” and then most of the time, I’ll add it to ClickUp or if I’m asking somebody to do it and they just get it done, they just put a green checkmark there and it’s done. It means that it’s done. 

There are different ways in which we want to communicate how the business runs, so we also want to be transparent and I think the biggest struggle that people have is like, “How do I start creating a team onboarding experience that isn’t overwhelming?” because I know my business so well, right? Our favorite recommendation is time block it for a week. What do they need to know the first week that they are with you? 

They’re going to learn on the job, they’re going to learn on their own time, they’re going to be overwhelmed, it’s okay but at least for you, you now have a start and end point of seven days like what you would like them to know about your business. I think that’s helped our clients a lot because they treat the team onboarding experience like a mini-course in a way. 

[0:29:04.4] Terri M. LeBlanc: Right, exactly and that’s one way to look at it, right? This is a mini-course, a crash course in our business. I haven’t thought of it like that before, I love that. 

[0:29:11.8] Veronica Yanhs: It’s like different modules. At least for me I have different sections and to echo what you are saying earlier like about teams not being able to go out to eat, it’s like well, the best thing that I can do is to buy everybody digital gift cards like lunch is on me this week or something and then part of the onboarding experience before I ask them to schedule a meeting with me at the end of the week just to check-in, I’m like, “Put down some places you want to receive gift cards from, from when we have team lunches. Is it Uber Eats or a specific restaurant that you really love or a diner?” 

Whatever it is, I have that information and I can take care of you in the way that allows us to still be a digital-first company without feeling too disconnected. 

[0:29:55.2] Terri M. LeBlanc: The great thing too when we created an onboarding process, we should probably give thumbs up to Notion for this idea, we created a list of things for somebody that’s coming on to be thinking about through the onboarding process. We don’t want the onboarding process like all documentation and things you work on your biz process, you are getting your business to become stable and so we have a set of questions we ask the new hires to keep in mind as they are going through the process. 

What’s working and what’s not working? What did we miss? Where can we improve? Give that to them on day one and that is the basis for the meeting that they have with Veronica at the end of the week. That’s where they kind of start talking about those questions, so then we know as a team how to improve the onboarding process for the next person. We’ve built in that feedback and iteration process right onto the onboarding and it also helps create that level of trust. 

[0:30:46.0] Veronica Yanhs: Culture of transparency, yeah and how we communicate like yeah, sure I run this business but I am totally open to if something is not working, please tell me or if it could be better, please tell me. I take a lot of pride in what I do but I also know that I can leave ego at the door because this thing that we’re building, this business that we’re building together is bigger than any one individual. 

I absolutely love that and I also love that I baked in like on Monday, when I send them their welcome email and they jump into Notion under the housekeeping part like, “Schedule a call with me this Friday so that we can debrief on everything that’s happened and then I can prep you for your next week.” When I onboard somebody, I always onboard them a week before I truly need them because then, you are not rushing because imagine if I needed you to start like March 1st or something and it was a Monday and I onboarded you and at the same time, as I’m onboarding you I am throwing tasks your way Terri. 

That will be so stressful. I just want you to spend one week to understand how we work, no stress and to see where things could be better, to understand our ideal clients, our offerings, how do we talk, it is a very much guided experience that also leans on them to be able to have critical thinking skills.

[0:32:04.6] Terri M. LeBlanc: We didn’t create a lot of new content for this either. We farmed what we already had, so in terms of the mission statement or I know that we’ve talked about using some of the podcast now to help bring on new team members, they have an understanding of how we talk about things and how we approach things with our clients. 

You are not necessarily creating new documents then team onboarding might be one of the easier things to put together because you’re just might be pulling from things you actually are sharing with clients but maybe putting a new employee or team member spin on it. 

[0:32:35.7] Veronica Yanhs: Yeah, absolutely. If you wanted to take 10 minutes after this episode to write down how you would like to onboard someone, some suggestions we have are break your business down into a few modules or some sections. The first one we always have is section one is housekeeping, your job description title and results that we would like to see you hit. Again, things LastPass, this is the team LastPass account, put your favorite gift card, logistics stuff. 

Then the second one, the second section or module is all about the business. Who Business Laid Bare is, what are our official elevator pitch is, the Orgasmic Operations ™ framework and how we work? We do client work, we also do sprint projects. It just breaks your business down in a way that is digestible for someone that’s probably never ever heard of you before and they’re going to get a lot of information thrown their way. 

If you come at it from an e-course or from a course section, it’s like how do you break it into digestible ways that allow people to maybe stretch themselves but also not in a way that will break them because that’s not good mindset or mentality for them if they’re like, “Oh my god, I am already drowning” because I have been in that situation. “Here is your first day, here’s this gigantic binder, a four-inch binder handbook and you get to meet with HR person and then good luck. I will see you later.” I’m like, “I need a little more guard railing”

[0:34:02.6] Terri M. LeBlanc: Support? 

[0:34:03.9] Veronica Yanhs: Support than that. Basically, what we’re saying is to make your business super hirable like hiring-friendly, you need to have a good project management system. You need to have a good knowledge base and you need to be able to onboard them in a way that sets them up for success because when they are set up for success, it only is a positive reflection of you.

[0:34:28.8] Terri M. LeBlanc: You know, I know they’re probably thinking in your mind, “I need to also have the money. I need to have this in my budget. I need to have the time to put these things together” but you have to remember that this is more than just having the money and the budget and the time. You have to remember you’re doing this to invest in your business, to invest in yourself and to invest in other people who will see you and help you realize your dream for your business. 

[0:34:54.7] Veronica Yanhs: This was so good Terri. I love this. All right, so we have given you all this information but if you’re unsure as to what specific systems you need to make your business – 

[0:35:05.5] Terri M. LeBlanc: If you want to see what ours looks like. 

[0:35:07.1] Veronica Yanhs: Oh yeah, that too. Feel orgasmic, book a consult call with us. I love to chat with you about what your business operations can look like and what they need to look like to take your business to the next level and to have it grow with you because your business is only as scalable, growable, sustainable – growable, is that a word? 

[0:35:28.6] Terri M. LeBlanc: We just made that one.

[0:35:31.0] Veronica Yanhs: Yeah, there you go. Your business is only as sustainable, scalable, all that good stuff as your operations and foundations are strong. If you know that operations are important just book a call with us, www.businesslaidbare.com/consult and we love to chat with you about how to make your operations orgasmic and that’s it. 

[0:35:51.6] Veronica Yanhs: Thanks for listening to The Business Whip, hosted by yours truly, Veronica Yanhs, CEO and Founder of Business Laid Bare. If you enjoyed this episode, spank that subscribe button in whichever podcast app you’re listening in and share this with your friends. Your support means everything, so thank you from the bottom of my butt because let’s be real, it’s so much bigger than my heart. I’ll see you in the next episode.