How to Hire the Best

Do you have “B” and “C” players on your team?  What are you going to do with them?  Can they be rehabilitated or should you let them go?  In this podcast episode Dr. Sabrina Starling goes deep and answers these questions and much more about building a great team.  She’s the author of How to Hire the Best and sheds some light on what actually works in the real world so that you can end up with a team of winners!


Podcast Transcript

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    Josh Fonger: [00:00:00] This is John Fonger. Welcome to the Work the System podcast where we help business owners move from owning a job to owning a business master the systems so that they can simplify growth. And today I’ve got a special guest Dr. Sabrina Starling. Dr. Sabrina Starling is the business psychologist and author of the how to hire the best series. She is the founder of tap the potential, and tap potential specializes in transforming small businesses into highly profitable great places to work. Then sending business owners on a four week vacation to celebrate that accomplishment. With her background in psychology and years of driving profit and small business Dr Starling knows what it takes to find keep and get exceptional performance out of your biggest investment which is your team members. All right. So Sabrina I am very excited to talk to you today. A lot of questions for myself personally and I’m sure the audience as well at home to try to channel those. But we want to figure out how to hire our best employees. But before we do tell us how you got into this line of work.

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:00:59] All right. So I was a psychologist working in a community mental health center in rural Wyoming. And because I wanted to have a life adventure and that’s how I ended up in Wyoming from Austin Texas. So and I was transitioning into coaching this was about 14 years ago and the people who were seeking me out for life coaching were small business owners and it was because of the work life balance they were working 60, 80, 90 hours a week or more and really struggling. And so you know I was like OK I’ll solve your work life balance problems and you know then I got digging deeper in there and I was right. I realized it’s not work life balance problem. They all want work life balance. They’re not workaholics because they want to be. It’s because they don’t have the team members that they can trust so that they can take time off from their business and work a more reasonable schedule. And as soon as I started talking to them about you know let’s look at the quality of your team and improving your team. They all wanted to take it from the standpoint of here’s the team that I’ve got. Use your psychology stuff to bring that and make them better make them engaged employees and highly motivated and that doesn’t work like you can’t take a warm body. I can say with absolute confidence Josh not take a warm body and turn it into A player can’t be done. I’ve had the best business owners try it and I feel like I’m a pretty good psychologist. So if anybody could make it happen these guys would have and they didn’t. So that approach out the window. Then I started looking at OK they need to hire a players and as soon as I started talking to about you’re gonna fire these folks and you got to get some better people on your team I got tremendous pushback. Like Sabrina you don’t know we’re in a rural area. Those A players don’t exist. I have to make do with what I have and so I was buying into that. That really kind of trash talk in their head that they were putting out there and I was buying into it. And then one morning you know how you have that transition from sleep to wakefulness and sometimes you have bright ideas, sometimes not. But that morning I had a bright idea and it was more of a question. And the question was What if it’s not true? What if it’s not true that because we’re in a rural area we can’t find great employees in these small businesses? And that really started putting me on a quest to see if I could find business owners in rural areas who have great team members and if they do what did they do to get them on their team. And I thought OK I’m going to write a book and I’m going to interview these business owners and it’ll be great. And you know what happened. Crickets! No one would talk to me and I was like Why. It’s not because I’m not a nice person or that they were ugly mean business owners. It’s because they all felt like they had no idea how they got these people on their team. So I really had to push and say Ok you have a couple of great employees. Just tell me the story of how they came to work for you. And time and time again that would get them finally to start talking to me. And as those stories unfolded I realized there are patterns that every one of them were doing the same thing to get these one or two great team members on their team and that those things could be turned into. Guess what a system.

    Josh Fonger: [00:04:15] Awe Great. I was hoping to do that.

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:04:17] Yes

    Josh Fonger: [00:04:17] Alright

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:04:17] There is a system for attracting A players to a small business. And to me that was powerful because it wasn’t so much that my end game was to help small business owners attract A players, my end game was to give these business owners a light and help them. You know these guys are working incredibly insane hours. Their health is suffering. Family Relationships suffer. You know it’s just one bad thing after another and then if you’re the hub in the business and everything revolves around you and because you’ve worked all these long hours and you’ve neglected your health and you have a heart attack or you have some other health crisis then everything that you’ve worked for falls apart. So my end game is how to make a business sustainable. So that the business owner has a good quality life. Team members have a good quality of life. And oh by the way if we can make it profitable along the way that’s even better right.

    Josh Fonger: [00:05:12] This is great. Yeah. This is right up our alley. I’m sure the audience is going to really dig that. So what did you what you found or that were the secret What was the consistent thing these owners actually did?

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:05:23] OK, there’s a couple of things you need to know about psychology of A players to understand how the system works. Psychology of A player’s is A player’s hang together. So who introduced us Josh?

    Josh Fonger: [00:05:33] Mike MULLINS. Oh Wayne did.

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:05:36] Wayne Collins. Introduced us

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:05:37] Who’s a A player.

    Josh Fonger: [00:05:37] He is, Why is no I love Wayne he’s great.

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:05:40] OK. But then our mutual connection beyond Wayne is Mike McCalowitz.

    Josh Fonger: [00:05:44] That’s right.

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:05:45] Mike McCalowitz is A player.

    Josh Fonger: [00:05:46] That’s funny how that works. I didn’t I didn’t even see that. OK.

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:05:50] That’s how we A player’s role. And that’s how it works in with hiring team members if you have one A player on your team and if it’s only you because there’s a good chance it could be just you’re the only A player in your business right now. You have a network of A players to tap into. And we have to utilize that A player network to attract more A players to the business. Now some other things to know about A players they really comprise about 10 percent of the population. So it’s a very small percentage. And that’s why it feels like when we’re hiring we’re looking for a needle in a haystack because there so much a small percentage A players are hardly ever unemployed. So they are not reading help wanted ads. They are not trolling indeed. They’re not on Craigslist. They’re employed elsewhere. So we have to use some ninja strategies to show up in their world. And the best ninja strategy we have for showing up in their world is social media; Facebook. So if you as a small business owner get intentional about making your business a great place to work. Guess who wants to brag to all their friends that they work at a great business. You’re A player team members. Oh and if you happen to tag them in photos that you put on social media about all the cool things that you’re doing as a team in your business all the better because now you’re showing up in their world and they have other A players that they are connected to in their world. So the best thing that you can do as a small business to become highly attractive to A players is to create a great place to work and understand what keeps A player in your business. Because retention and loyalty is where this is. This is where you’re going to really explode profit payroll and turnover in a business will suck the profit right out of the business. But if you can attract A players to your team and keep them long term. Not only are you reducing the turnover costs and the payroll costs. You also are setting the stage to drive loyalty with your top clients and customers and that’s where the whole pumpkin planning piece comes in that I work with our clients on so if we can drive loyalty with top clients and customers and with team members you’re losing the churn the money that gets lost to churn and how you have to attract new business to your business and that’s more expensive than doing business with existing clients and customers. And we’re cutting out the payroll and the churn of employee turnover. Then your position to be highly profitable way beyond your industry peers and their profitability.

    Josh Fonger: [00:08:32] So it sounds like you take some work that they actually rolled their sleeves there’s no there’s no shortcut. You have actually.

    [00:08:38] I’m sorry Josh.

    [00:08:40] I’m sorry. I was hoping for like a five minute solution this is actually making a great place to work. But it’s so true. I said I mean that reality is true and I work with some great places to work and a great great teams. So well let’s get to some realistic examples, so let’s say you have a company. Let’s just say your doctor’s office. Lets say a chiropractor and you’ve got five employees and one of is A player, three of them are B, and one’s a C, like what do you do do you start to make the Bs and As or you just say forget about that let’s just slowly over the years cycle out the C’s and the B minus isn’t just worker As stays.

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:09:17] Ok. So I don’t want to scare anybody who’s listening and if that if I tell you that you need to fire all those team members who are not A players and your listeners are going to run for the hills or they’re turning off the podcast.

    Josh Fonger: [00:09:30] They want honesty that’s fine.

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:09:33] So I really find the best approach is a not so slow transition over time so I don’t want imply this takes years and years but the idea is we want to be first become very intentional about supporting that one A player that you have in the business and understanding what’s frustrating to that A player because the last thing you want to do is lose that A player in this transition. So when you have a C or D player in the business or multiple C or D players, that really like spraying A player repellent all over the business because no A player wants to be cleaning up behind somebody who’s slacking off and not doing what they need to do. And that’s the first thing that’s gotta go is you’ve got to support that A player and send a strong message. I am not going to tolerate bad behavior from other team members anymore because I value you. But now you’ve got to be careful with that too you don’t wanna go too far because then you get the entitled A player which that’s a whole other podcast episode. But then you get the C player or the let the worst team member get them out of the business as fast as you can and then higher up. So the strategy is every time you hire you want to improve your odds of hiring right. So we need to understand that hiring is a skill set just like every other skill set that we’re learning in our business. And the more we can systematized our hiring the better because that takes human error out of the process and we humans are the biggest error in this process. So the average business owner who follows traditional hiring practices is going to miss hire seventy five percent of the time.

    Josh Fonger: [00:11:07] Wow!

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:11:08] Because we just do what we think we’re supposed to do we’re supposed to we have a need to hire we throw an ad together. We do some interviews with the best of the people who submitted resumes which might be the best of the worst. And then we interview those people and we feel like OK we have these three interviews. This one was OK and others two were terrible someone hired this OK person, that doesn’t work. So we need to filter filter filter and that process one book that I recommend beyond my book out of the past is the book, WHO by Jeff Smart. That is the system for hiring.

    Josh Fonger: [00:11:44] I have it right behind me somewhere I read it years ago. Great book.

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:11:46] Yeah. And not only is it the system for hiring. He gives you all the questions to ask and the why behind the questions that you’re asking. Get his book, get his free PDFs downloads, and you’re good to go. A lot of business owners spend way too much time figuring out what questions should I ask during the interview? I tell him just go read WHO, there’s your questions are right there it’s all done for you. So You’re not you’re taking the strategy of hiring and that is going to be that’s what really starts to build the culture of the business is that moment you draw the line in the sand and say I will no longer tolerate bad employee behavior and you let somebody go around that that sends a message to the B players, Oh we better perk up around here because Joe is serious. He’s not going to put up with this anymore or you know whatever.

    Josh Fonger: [00:12:35] I couldn’t agree more. That’s why people ask me what I do transformations and we put a new strategy in place and they’re like why I don’t think employees get away like this new thing and putting systems in place and I say well the number one way to make it stick. You know, I’ve seen over the years is if you fire someone for not doing it the next 30 days that’s your best chance of having success. You might like to hear it but just, it’s just the reality. I mean people need to know you’re serious and the mission comes first, the principles come first, the business comes first. And if they don’t see that. Acutely one gal where she actually hired her brother and once everyone saw that she was going to fire her brother who’d been there for 10 years you’re like oh wow she’s serious and then everything went great after that.

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:13:12] Yeah.

    Josh Fonger: [00:13:12] It dose matter got to be bold. Ok.

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:13:16] Yeah.

    Josh Fonger: [00:13:16] That’s so scary for some folks but I think I mean it just it’s the reality. But don’t think you’re serious until I can see it. So.

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:13:22] Yeah.

    Josh Fonger: [00:13:23] So what do you do. So what about what I ask you what personality profiling personality testing is there any particular test you like or things you think are important in the hiring process make sure you have A players?

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:13:33] Ok. So yeah the personality testing is really interesting. You got to be careful about which test you use pre hire because you can get in some hot water legally if you’re using tests that are not normal and validated and a lot of personality tests that are out there. I mean there’s a slew of personality tests available on the Internet every other week someone asked me. I’m thinking about using this as part of my free hire process. What do you think about it? I’m like I’ve never heard of it And I can’t find any statistics on reliability and validity when I look at it on the Internet. So that’s scary. In general a small business that does not have a dedicated H.R. probably is not in a position to use pre-hire personality tests you’re when you’re getting to the point of about 10 employees on up to about 20 and beyond that. That’s when you’re in a position to use good personality measures pre-hire. So if you’re not in that position. What I recommend that you do is to think through the personality characteristics that are needed to do the job exceptionally well day in and day out. That means we have to do some legwork first because we have to clearly define the role that you’re hiring for and the one result that if that person doesn’t get anything done for you in a given day or a given week they get that one thing done. They’re contributing to the business and the profitability with that one thing. So we’ve got to find out what that one result is and then think through what are the personality characteristics that somebody needs to deliver that one result day in and day out. Exceptionally well. So the best example I can give of this is I worked with a startup entrepreneur a few years back and he had a food product that he was selling at a kiosk in the mall and he was having tremendous success selling that product because he was extroverted very outgoing. He would he would make his product stand in the kiosk and people would pass by in the mall and he would; Hey! Come on over here and try this. I’ve got something you’ll really like it. And he could do that day in and day out. It gave him energy wonderful who’s an extrovert. So when he got to the point where he couldn’t handle doing everything anymore and he needed somebody to stand in the kiosk while he made product. He started hiring his buddies. His buddies we’re all introverts. And they would do really well for the first hour and then after that they would start getting on their phones turning their back to the traffic walking by. You know all the things introverts do I’m an introvert so I know I get it all the things they were doing to recharge their batteries so they did not have personality traits that were needed in that role to do it exceptionally well day in and day out. It doesn’t take personality testing for us to figure these things out. As business owners in our business what it does take is we have to get super clear on what that one result is for that role. And that’s really where things can go off track because when we go to hire in our businesses we’ve been doing everything. So we try to find somebody who’s like us who can do everything. There’s a couple of things we have to realize about that. We haven’t been doing everything as well as we think we have. We suck at a lot of things and getting by. And when we hire somebody who can do those other things exceptionally well and we give them one thing to focus on and if it’s in their area of strength they’re going to totally blow us out of the water with how we’ve been doing that. So when we start looking for I need somebody Who’s really good with people, and who is detail oriented, and who can who can work Quickbooks, and who wants to do my social media.

    Josh Fonger: [00:17:08] Good luck.

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:17:09] No that’s why you can’t find those folks. You know what went down.

    Josh Fonger: [00:17:14] Well then leads me to next question. So in this hyper specialization market this might make more sense for online companies compared to traditional ones. Do you recommend having lots of individual experts do lots of specific things as contractors or are you more of a we should hire a global person who kind of just does a number of things because then we can kind of them 40 hours a week?

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:17:36] Think you can guess where I’m going to go with this.

    Josh Fonger: [00:17:38] You tell me.

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:17:38] I believe hiring people around their specialty and especially when you’re growing an online business it’s the greatest opportunity you have to keep things profitable is to hire people for the hours that you need rather than trying you know you need somebody and you’ve got to find things to do to fill 40 hours a week for them. Hire them for what you need for the hours that you need in their zone of strengths.

    Josh Fonger: [00:18:03] I’m actually working on that right now Kind of a little shout out to the world that we’re actually looking for a social media expert assistant to do podcasts things like this you know kind of be the producer of these things. We’ll see for me what I like to do when I hire I have to always go through referrals and so these last few weeks I’ve just been going to asking around ask around because I that’s my number one screening process is to find somebody already like working with somebody that’s a tough one.

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:18:29] Exactly the how to hire the best strategy is intentional networking. If they are somebody that’s doing well for somebody else in your network and somebody else that you know is having a good experience with them there’s a good chance you’re going to be pleased with their work too.

    Josh Fonger: [00:18:44] Yeah that was right. I also read this book by Cameron Herold. From what I hear a good chunk about how he would hire you to interview at least a hundred resumes there’s a hundred to one hundred resumes to one good hire as he was scaling out his business not everyone’s found but it takes a lot. This is one advice question. So what about for careers or positions that are not glamorous? I’ve got a client that actually does part of her business as a moving company and being a mover is not the most exciting job. More like a you know at the lower level job at a restaurant a dishwasher. Like what if you consistently need to hire those things. I mean are you ever going to find A players is it even worth looking for A players in those jobs?

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:19:26] Yes. A players exist at every level in a business. And what A players are about and we should back up and define what an A player is. So an there is a go getter who I believe walks around with the unspoken question How can I serve? Or how can I help? I had we put on a retreat here at my home entrepreneurs retreat center called breakthroughs on the bayou. And this past March and I brought in help to have someone here to clean after the retreat and make sure to open the door for the caterers and that sort of thing. Man was amazing. He at any time that there was a need it was. He was there. He was like What can I do? What do you need? That’s in A player and he is a part time employee for a cleaning service that I hired and I found him through the A player network. By the way that’s you know kind of that same networking strategy. So A players are showing up wanting to help wanting to serve. They have that bigger vision. They are problem solvers so they’re not the ones who come to you as the business owner and say I hit a roadblock. I couldn’t log in near your Facebook account to do your social media, Josh. Just didn’t get done. Sorry I was waiting for you to get back and give me the password. I’m going to go ask somebody else on the team. Hey dose anyone know the password here to get in because I was supposed to do this and I can’t get in. They’re going to keep working at it to try to figure it out. A players also are interested in growth opportunities. So when we have these roles in our businesses that are not glamorous or we have businesses that do things that are not glamorous. We need to be thinking through what opportunities do we have for someone to have a career here with us. And if they’re not going to have a lifelong career with us what can we offer them that will move them further in their life towards their hopes and dreams. And that’s where we really move from a transactional relationship to a mutually invested relationship. So a transactional relationship is you show up you work I pay you the hourly wage for that work. A mutually invested relationship is you show up you help support my goals and my vision for the business, I in turn want to know about you and what your goals and your hopes and dreams are and I’ll look for ways that I can support you in achieving those. And I think the best example of this is I had someone that I worked with a while back and he had a pooper scooper type business and he hired college students. You know convincing college students that it’s great to get out there and scoop poop in people’s backyards. He had no problem attracting team members and he had lots of things that he did. But one of the things that he did is he supported them in their hopes and aspirations. He charged more for his service and he positions that to his customers that we’re hiring college students. They are make they’re putting themselves through college scooping poop in your yard and they’re feeding themselves while they’re paying their college tuition with this this job so I pay them more than minimum wage. And so his customers were happy to pay him more for the service. So it kind of you have to kind of work both sides of this with your customers.

    Josh Fonger: [00:22:46] That’s Very interesting. Well I’ve got like a list of 50 questions you’ve got to figure out which one to ask next. So let’s go to reality. So let’s say the reality is you have a B or C player and you are related to them. It’s your spouse right. Lets just say.

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:23:01] You Spouce is even worst

    Josh Fonger: [00:23:01] Yes. Oh I’ve had I’ve had this happen many times. So when your in that situation. What is your recommendation? How do you steer to that situation?

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:23:12] Very very carefully. The first thing that I, you have to be mindful of is there is a family relationship a marriage there and a business relationship. And ultimately it’s going to be up to the client to decide which is more important. So and the outcome could go either way. It doesn’t really matter which is more important but you need to know which is more important first. So if the marriage is more important than the conversation becomes I value our marriage so much. I don’t want you in the business anymore.

    Josh Fonger: [00:23:45] Yeah well that’s a tough tough conversation.

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:23:49] So but what happens in these family businesses is inevitably there will be B, C, D team members who are family members that have just kind of been along for the ride. That is repelling those A players that you need to hire to grow the business and you do have to take a firm stand. We’re not going to have that going on everyone who works in this business is going to follow you know how we do things here. No one’s getting special treatment and every role needs to have accountability. So results that they’re responsible for. And if someone is not hitting those results they will no longer be employed with the business. So this is a transition and it’s rocky. Every business that we take through this transition loses people sometimes long term employees. So the way I start it with a business owner is it’s going to get better. It’s going to be a, you know, about a year of transition and there’s going to be a lot of bumpy spots and uncomfortable moments. That’s what we’re here to support you through. We do know what’s on the other side but be prepared coming in. So it’s really inoculating them. I’ve been at this long enough to know if I tell entrepreneurs You’re going to work with us and it’s all going to be unicorns and Rose and you know there. As soon as they hit a challenge they’re going to bail. And so I think if we’re realistic with them going in. Their success their chances of success higher.

    Josh Fonger: [00:25:12] Yeah. Definitely a lot of people who, I mean I work with the Sam Carpenter, the author of The Book Work the System and he tells me all the inner secrets of what happened as he transitioned his business and kind of systematized. And one of the things he put on realize is that; well first off one good thing about systems stay employees come and go but systems stay. We had the epiphany to change his business during that next year. Every employee that had their I think except for one, all them left. So once they realized when to do things different they were all removed and replaced over the next year. And with A players. But it took, I mean that was part of the reality. Things were just gonna change with a good idea. Had to have their people there.

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:25:49] No. No. I’m a firm believer in it because we have a podcast too, Profit by Design podcast and we tell the real life school of hard knocks stories of small business owners because There’s so much out there on the Internet that would lead us to believe that entrepreneurs live in nice houses, drive nice cars and vacation at the beach and or live at the beach. And I think that’s a false expectation. And if we’re not realistic about yes we can do great things as an entrepreneur but there is going to be some hard spots. I think we’re setting people up to fail.

    Josh Fonger: [00:26:28] Definitely. This is a question I get all the time is money. So they, I’m thinking of one particular client, it’s dental office. So they want to hire great players. They’ve now have a new strategy that they have a lot of B and C players but they feel like they don’t. They feel like they don’t have enough money to pay in A player salary so what do they do?

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:26:48] There’s lots of ways around this. This is where most of my clients were when I started helping them with this problem. So I think, where you want to start is you want to know what the ninetieth percentile is for your geographic area for that position and you also want to know what seventy fifth percentile would be in the fiftieth percentile. So the Bureau of Labor Statistics bls dot gov. That’s where you can go to to find some data to start giving you that information your local job service office can give you information on that too. So when you’re hiring if you can put your salary or wage that you’re going to pay around the sixty fifth percentile so it’s a little more than the going wage in that area but not so much that it’s going to blow your payroll and your ability to pay that. And then as you are laying out for them a career growth plan during the interview process so you lay out you come on board you’re at the 60 fifth percentile and that equates to this wage if you hit this performance target in three months we’re going to bump you up this much. And if you hit this performance target at 9 months we’ll bump you up here. And if you’re here at a year and then we pump you up here and over the course of maybe three years with us if you’re hitting all your performance targets now you’re in the ninetieth percentile of pay for this role and you have the opportunity to grow with us if you but you have to lay that out. And I really believe in having this documented for them on papers they can see it. It does nothing. It means nothing to them for us to say we’re going to pay you at the ninetieth percentile in three years so be like who knows what that means. You have to put that in real dollars and show them a real path to get there. If you do that. And then on the back of that paper you have your A players talking about why they love working for you. So some A player endorsements for your place to work and they leave that interview with that in hand and put it on brightly colored paper make it scratch and sniff whatever so that it really stands out to them. You’ve positioned yourself now as very different from every other employer that they’ve interviewed with as every other employer gives lip service to. Yeah we have opportunities to grow here.

    Josh Fonger: [00:29:06] But you have a specific plan.

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:29:08] A specific plan. And when you have that specific plan you can get away with paying a couple dollars less than your competitor who might be a larger company down the road because they’ve said yes we’ll bring you in at this wage and there’s opportunity to grow but that applicant now has a clear tangible path to grow. And it’s not just empty promises.

    Josh Fonger: [00:29:32] What other thing can a small business do because obviously big companies that can typically have retirement packages and health care and 401K all these other things. What other thing can a small business do to differentiate and hire good talent who is going to work for a company who can pay more. There any other techniques you have?

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:29:47] Yes so many things. So take all the things that feel like their deficiencies as a small business and we turn them into strengths. And one of those is work life balance and flexibility when you work for a small business owner. They’re much more likely to let you juggle your schedule so you can go to your kid’s baseball game.

    Josh Fonger: [00:30:07] OK.

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:30:07] That doesn’t happen in corporate America. The other thing is that you have the opportunity to really advance your career in a small business much more rapidly than you do in corporate America. So in a small business you can come in and you can be the front desk person and in two years time if you’re A player you might be the V.P. of admin or the V.P. of Operations. Who knows? And so that ability to scale and responsibility and pay is what appeals A players. So absolutely tout that. And here’s my other thing that we recommend we’re profit first people. So we have all of our businesses building their profit in a profit first account getting the all the team involved in making the business profitable. Use that as a loyalty incentive. So if you’re here with us after three years time you get to have a share in the profit distributions that we do that goes into a loyalty account and you get to draw a portion of that out every year. And meanwhile it builds but that becomes an added benefit. You’re not giving it right away. You’re making them prove themselves that they’re really going to be A players and be with you long term before you for that kind of benefit.

    Josh Fonger: [00:31:27] Yeah I really like the profit sharing. I tried to make that happen. It’s tough to do. That’s a great method for doing it. Well I because of our time I want to get to a couple other questions that are prudent to what you do which is this four week vacation idea tell us on your web site. And I want to ask you So what is the reason why and how do I actually make that happen?

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:31:46] Ok. So my big why for this is it goes right back to my early years working with business owners and seeing them work their tails off and not taking care of themselves. But what happened for me is that I a few years. Five years ago now. I got pregnant with my second child which was unexpected I didn’t know we were gonna have another baby in the family. And I wanted to take maternity leave because with my first child I was starting my business. She was four weeks old when I started my business. And I did not want to have that same experience again. I really wanted to enjoy the time with my daughter. And so I just one morning woke up and said this is that I’m doing something different and I don’t know how to make it work and make it work and I want to take a nine week maternity leave. So I had four months to make a nine week maternity leave happen. I was pretty much a solo-preneur at that time. So and this is where systems come in. If you have systems in your business it’s much easier to be away from the business and have things hum along without you. I had some pretty good systems so I was able to make it work and the business continued to do all essential operations while I was out for nine weeks. But here’s the deal I did that and then I came back and I went right back in to doing everything that I had been doing before. It never dawned on me that oh my gosh I have this newfound freedom from my business I should continue to build on that. So when Mike came out with clockwork the four week vacation is something that I’ve always wanted. To me it has seemed like that’s the ultimate for a business where your business really has value when it does not require you for the essential operations. And four weeks is a complete business cycle. Money comes in sales comes in money collected service delivered. That whole process can happen in the course of four weeks so if a business can do that then there is this freedom for the entrepreneur and the business has real value. So. You know we take business owners through this transformation of the business is pretty much chaotic. No systems in place bad team members lack of profit that really takes about a year sometimes two years to make that fully hum along. But all the while they’re working towards the goal of being able take the four week vacation and so that putting those vacation tests into play where you know you just turn off your stuff for some of our clients coming in turning off the cell phone for two hours or an hour at a time and not being instantly available to anybody is huge. And so we just take that’s a little sliver of success and we’re going to build on that and over the course of time set you up to be able to take a four week vacation.

    Josh Fonger: [00:34:29] Wow, that’s great. So with our limited time what’s what I want to leave this kind of final question here what’s one thing you want to leave the audience with? So small business owners, entrepreneurs is there just one nugget you want to leave them with before we leave then I’ll ask you, you know where they can find you and find out more information about what you do.

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:34:45] Yeah. So at the end of the day remember that work supports life and not the other way around.

    Josh Fonger: [00:34:53] I like that it’s a good quote and then where can they find you? What if they want more information?

    Dr. Sabrina Starling: [00:34:57] All right. So if the four week vacation appeals to you I think the best place to go is four week vacation dot com. That’s where you will get my four week vacation jumpstart guide. And that’s really designed for you no matter where you are in your entrepreneurial journey. To start thinking about how do I get this business to run without me. I know that your listeners are already systems people and they fully bought in or are buying into the value of systems. So you guys you’re a little bit further ahead so celebrate that and start thinking about how do I set things up so I could be away from my business. So for week vacation dot com and then we have the Profit by Design podcast and you can find us at Profit by Design Podcast dot com too.

    Josh Fonger: [00:35:42] Okay. Very good. All right well thanks for being for sharing with us your business expertise. Regards to hiring. I learned a lot I got a whole page of notes here. Very useful stuff very practical stuff. And it’s based on reality to which I like it’s not just a pie in the sky. Thanks everybody for tuning in today to the Work the System podcast. Look forward to sharing the podcast with you next week. Helping you grow your business with systems so you can work less and make more, Thanks everybody.


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