Getting a job fresh out of college is incredibly difficult today.
There's an incredible amount of (warranted) frustration from new graduates because a shocking number of "entry-level" positions at mid-to-large sized companies now require multiple years of experience. So much so that the sentiment of "make entry-level jobs entry-level again" went viral on LinkedIn after an iconic post from my good friend Braden Martin.
Degree requirements and "experience inflation" have taken hold of the job market, making it almost impossible for new grads to gain any traction in their job search.
This requirement from larger companies provides a unique opportunity for small businesses looking to grow! Instead of requiring degrees and previous experience, small business owners can now fill entry-level roles by creating practical training and mentoring opportunities for new graduates.
Train for the role you want to create.
It's common for small business owners to feel trapped by their businesses. These feelings of entrapment typically arise when you focus too much on working in the company. As your business grows, you, as the owner, should naturally transition from doing everything yourself to building a team.
Instead, most small business owners become the bottleneck: the place where the natural function of the business grinds to a halt due to your restraints, whether time or skill.
Every business consists of several roles that continue to push and grow the company; from bookkeeping and accounting to sales and marketing, your business cannot succeed if you continue to do everything. The good news is that you naturally create tasks and processes as you work! By being aware of how you work and recording your procedure, you can create an effective training program for any new hire joining your business.
New graduates with no experience have a blank slate regarding how they should do a job. Your training and mentoring sessions then are establishing new processes! You're not fighting against the bad habits that an older company may have created or the differences in your process vs. their previous experience.
You're shaping someone's experience.
A company's culture is a crucial indicator of how well the business will perform.
For example, if a company mistreats employees and takes advantage of them, the organization will experience high turnover rates and often struggle to maintain an excellent and productive workforce. Alternatively, if the employees are treated with respect, well-compensated, and invested in by the company, the business is more likely to flourish.
When working with new graduates with minimal experience, you, as the business owner, have an incredibly unique opportunity to shape your company's culture and the employee's working experience. You determine whether this person will have an encouraging, challenging, rewarding experience or a painful, overly strenuous, disappointing work experience.
The bottom line for any business owner is this: building the right team with the right culture will create a business that can extend beyond just yourself. Instead of limiting your new organization to individuals with a specific background, experience, or set of skills, know that you can train and develop people to help build a flourishing business.