Posted by: Kristen Beireis, Trust Marketing Expert

My colleague (and project management resource queen), Kim Beasley, has inspired me to write about building a team using social networks. Kim (http://twitter.com/kimbeasley) asked her Twitter Network about their experience using social networks to build their virtual teams.  Of course, I jumped right in, as I’ve built my team MOSTLY through social networks.

As a virtual business owner it’s important to bring in team members that I can relate to, work with, and who ALSO have the required skills.  Social networks allow me to find out a lot of information before I even interview the candidate.  Here’s the deal!  Social networks are “social.”  So, I get to know who a potential team member is, as a person, before I approach them.  I listen carefully to what they say on social networks.  If I agree with their advice to others, I know that we have a lot in common.  I also learn about their skill sets.  You see how this is a valuable place?

There comes a point in every coaching business where you need some help with the backend work of your business.  As your business grows and changes, there’s a second level where you need more advanced help in your business.  It’s no longer just about the skill level of your team.  It’s also about how much responsibility your team is willing to own.  It’s about whether they can take initiative and do things without asking. Many will turn to fellow coaches for referrals, which is a great place to start.  Even if you have a referral, it’s good to do your own legwork, because what works for one coach may not work for another (I’ve seen that mistake all too often in the coaching industry…it’s killer on the pocket book).  So, I suggest you get on your social networks and start doing your research.

Relying on social networks to learn about your potential team member can answer your questions.  If this candidate is answering advanced questions about simple topics then you have a pretty good clue that they know the skills.  Then listen for the moments when they start talking about overall business concepts…do you agree?  Are you connecting with this person?  Ask some very pointed questions of this candidate through the networks.  USE your social networks to screen your team BEFORE you get them on the phone.  It’ll make that interview process a lot simpler and you’ll know by the end of the call whether you want to hire that person or not.

Kim asked her Twitter network 8 questions and has created a whole blog series around those answers, so I suggest you also read her blog posts to gather more information about building and managing your virtual team.  Start with the first one at http://www.projectmanagement411.com/using-social-media-to-build-your-virtual-project-management-team-part-1/.

What are your thoughts on social networks and team building?  Do you have any questions?  I’d love to hear form you.



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