It’s only September but 2021 has brought many challenges to Australia’s collective business operations … and life in general.
That’s why I’m proud to be recognised in the Inside Small Business’s Top 50 Business Leaders report.
But I have to admit: this achievement wouldn’t have been possible without the support of my dedicated team at Safetyline Jalousie, the cogs that make up our well-oiled manufacturing machine.
Think outside the box
The question of whether you hire for experience or ability is one many business owners consider when onboarding new staff.
While you might think that hiring people with years of experience in a similar role is the best (read: safest) option, what I’ve learned from more than a decade at the helm of Safetyline Jalousie is if you want to achieve new goals, you need to step outside the box.
That’s why I look to onboard people who have the experience I don’t have and can teach me new things.
Hiring for attitude over experience has allowed us to achieve incredible outcomes.
Trust your gut
After years in business, you certainly learn to trust your gut.
And there’s nothing as costly as the wrong hire so there’s a lot of importance in getting it right.
While you might think it’s risky to hire friends, some of our longest-serving employees are people we’ve known for a very long time.
In my experience, I’ve found there’s great mutual respect between friends in the workplace, and when you respect someone, you’re more likely to work hard for them.
I’ve also learnt to embrace conflict early and know that raising issues while they’re still small can prevent them from becoming bigger ones.
Creating a collaborative environment that’s transparent and tackles any and all challenges head-on makes for a formidable workplace with engaged employees.
Dive in with diversity
We’re probably one of the most diverse employers in town with people from a number of nationalities and cultures.
Their skill sets are equally diverse with backgrounds in sales, marketing, catering, defence, event management, landscaping, party entertainment and construction.
Each team member brings their own unique set of strengths, qualities, and expertise.
We’re also really proud to have gender equality across our leadership team.
Setting the foundations for the future
With the backbone of great people behind us, I feel supported to take the business to new places – whether that’s exporting into additional markets overseas or developing new products.
By establishing a strong senior management structure made up of Lisa, Chilli, Mandy, and my brother and co-founder Nathan (not to forget our just as brilliant sales team, Mike, Adam, Ali and Rom), I’m able to spend more time on high level, visionary endeavours.
The importance of finding good fits for your company will always supersede knowledge or expertise.
After all, skills can be learned but finding individuals who truly care about your business, who want to work hard to see it succeed is rare.
Our company wouldn’t be the same without our team.
I’m grateful for their loyalty and proud to share the achievement of being named one of the Top 50 Small Business Leaders with everyone at Safetyline Jalousie.