10 Tips for Hiring Family Members at Your Small Business | It can be tempting to hire family members at your small business, especially if you’re looking to take on extra staff during busy times or if your employees are struggling to meet demand.
However, there are a few things to keep in mind before you make this decision. First, it’s important to make sure that your family member has the skills and training needed to perform the job you’re offering them.
10 Tips for Hiring Family Members at Your Small Business
1) Get Professional Help
If you’re thinking about hiring a family member at your small business, there are a few things you should keep in mind. First and foremost, you should always get professional help when it comes to hiring.
This means working with a lawyer or HR specialist to ensure that you’re doing everything by the book. Additionally, don’t forget to make sure that the position being offered is fair and competitive; offer wages or salary packages similar to what you would offer another employee.
A person shouldn’t be hired just because they are family–they should be hired because they will do an excellent job for your company!
2) Look at Other Options
If you’re considering hiring a family member to help out with your small business, be sure to look at all of your options. There may be other qualified candidates who would be a better fit for the job. Make sure you’re clear about what the job entails and what the expectations are.
Be sure to set some ground rules to avoid any conflict down the road. Third, have a plan in place in case things don’t work out. Be prepared to deal with any fallout if things do go south. Remember that it’s okay to say no. Don’t feel like you have to hire a family member just because they’re related to you.
3) Decide if the Risks are Worth It
First, ask yourself if the risks are worth it. If your family member doesn’t know what they’re doing or can’t take direction well, they could be a liability to your company and potentially cause legal problems.
They may also have an advantage over other employees who are looking for jobs in that they have a personal stake in the business’s success and may work harder than someone else might.
If you decide to hire them, set clear expectations of their responsibilities so there is no confusion about their duties and make sure they understand any policies you enforce such as those related to dress code or cell phone use during work hours.
4) Keep it Professional
It’s important to keep things professional. This means setting clear expectations and boundaries from the start. A great way to do this is by laying out a formal employment contract that outlines specific responsibilities, salary, benefits, hours, etc.
The contract should also include a non-compete clause in case one of you wants to leave and open their own business. If you have employees, they should be made aware that they’re working with family so they don’t feel like they’re being taken advantage of or excluded. If your children are under 18, remember to follow state guidelines when it comes to hiring them.
5) Have Realistic Expectations
Before you bring any family members on board, it’s important to have realistic expectations. Realize that there may be some awkwardness at first. Family dynamics are complicated, and bringing work into the mix can make things even more complicated. It’s important to be patient and understand that it may take some time for everyone to adjust.
Be upfront about salary expectations as well as other benefits like health insurance coverage or vacation days. Discussing these topics before an offer is made helps avoid potential hurt feelings later on if either party changes their mind about those details.
6) Don’t Mix Business and Personal Life
When you mix business and personal life, it can be difficult to set boundaries. You may feel like you have to give your family member preferential treatment or that you can’t be as critical of their work. This can lead to tension and conflict both at work and at home.
It’s important to set clear expectations from the beginning and to treat your family member like any other employee. Here are a few tips to help you do that:
- Define what type of role they will play in the company, e.g., assistant manager, production assistant.
- Create a written job description outlining what tasks they will be responsible for.
- Document how much time is required each week to perform these tasks (you might want to ask them how many hours per week they are able/willing to commit).
- Discuss salary expectations and review comparable salaries in your area for someone with similar experience.
- Meet with HR to discuss benefits options available.
- Ask them if they would need any accommodations related to working conditions or workload.
- Provide feedback about performance as necessary.
7) Make Contracts Clear
When you’re hiring family members to work at your small business, it’s important to have clear contracts in place. If a disagreement arises and there is no contract, who can be trusted to make the right decision?
In order to avoid any questions about the contract later on, make sure everyone understands what their responsibilities are and agree on what happens if someone wants out of the job or if they don’t get along with other employees.
8) No Favoritism
Favoritism is an unavoidable part of life. The problem is that it can get you into trouble when you’re running a business. Some employees may feel that they’re being treated unfairly, or not given the same opportunities as others, which can lead to discord and ultimately result in lawsuits. When hiring family members, avoid any signs of favoritism and make sure everyone has equal opportunity.
9) Give Equal Opportunities
If you do decide to hire a family member, make sure that they have the same opportunities as anyone else. The sibling who got in because of their name should not be getting more breaks than the other employees.
Talk with your family members about what their expectations are and what you expect from them. Make sure they know the policies of your company before hiring them. Take time to find someone outside of the family so that there is no conflict between being boss and being a relative.
10) Get Support From Others in the Company
Support from others in the company is often needed to help keep your family member’s work load manageable. It can be difficult to provide this support if you are not involved with their day-to-day tasks.
At a small business, this is a particularly big issue as there may not be anyone else available to help out. Discuss the situation with other employees and see what they would like to do, or ask one of them if they would take on more responsibility. If none of them are willing, it may be time to look into hiring an outside consultant or contractor who has more time available than you do.
Conclusion: 10 Tips for Hiring Family Members
If you’re thinking about hiring family members at your small business, there are a few things you should keep in mind. First, make sure you’re clear about the job responsibilities and expectations. Second, establish ground rules upfront to avoid any conflict down the road. Third, be aware of nepotism laws in your state. Fourth, document everything and have each family member sign an employment contract. Fifth, don’t give preferential treatment to family members. Sixth, create a clear line between work and home life. Finally, be prepared to deal with difficult conversations if things don’t work out.