(By Laurie Kahn) We recently participated in the Rising Above Summit. The pandemic and hiring were among the many questions raised by radio managers.
With the pandemic, many radio stations had to cut costs which resulted in layoffs. A great question was how do you know when the time to hire is back?
This is a tough one and does need some strong attention. Obviously the most important factor is if you once again have the cash flow to cover the additional burden of compensation for the new or re-hire.
Some signals that tell you the time is right include:
- You or essential team members are spending too much valuable time on non-essential tasks
- Customer service is suffering
- Turn around time for proposals or responding to client needs is increasing so you are either losing business or hurting relationships
- Your staff is conspicuously overworked
However, do not feel like you need to hire back in a full-time capacity. There are many success stories from utilizing part-time or ‘gig’ workers. You may even be able to ‘hire-up’ and bring on someone part time that you couldn’t afford on a full-time basis. This is the time to be creative.
Another good question was directed when I suggested to stop using the title ‘Salesperson’ especially in job ads. Let’s face it, the next generations of workers have a bad idea of what a salesperson does, in their minds it is someone who sits at a desk and makes 100 cold calls a day and that is not of interest to them. Younger generations do need to be shown what all is involved in sales to get their interest. Consider using titles like:
- Account Executive or Account Manager
- Director of Business
- New Business Development
- Success Manager
- Marking Solutions Consultant
- Customer Delivery Specialist
- Director of Client Solutions
Most importantly, it is essential to really illustrate to prospects what all is involved in selling advertising for a radio group. Think of all that is involved such as research, creative thinking, promotions, ability to get out and meet with local businesses to help them grow, no two days alike and more. Don’t forget to include some of the perks like client entertainment, concerts, fun events, not being stuck in an office all day and being part of a team so able to participate in brainstorming.
Another hot button, especially with the younger generations is how you support and help your community. Share stories on how you have helped local non-profits and also how you have helped grow mom and pop businesses.
In our next article we will address the questions about compensation.
Laurie Kahn is the creator and founder of Media Staffing Network. She can be reached by e-mail at [email protected]