BY LOUISE JAKUBIK, CSP
DON’T GET TOO BIG TOO QUICKLY.
Be slow in the beginning; add one person at a time.
CONSIDER THE PURPOSE
OF HIRING A SUBCONTRACTOR before you
choose someone. It could be to:
on what the market wants.
Replace some of the presentations you are
IDENTIF Y SUBCONTRACTORS
WITH PARTICULAR EXPERTISE.
Use them to train the other instructors.
HAVE SUBCONTRACTORS COLLATE
EVALUATION DATA. As the business owner, you should
also look at all the data and ask the speaker if there are
any red flags in the participant comments.
TREAT YOUR SUBCONTRACTORS
LIKE GOLD. Know about their lives, care about them,
do retreats, and pay them well. You can’t say
“thank you” enough.
PAT IYER, MSN, built a large, successful
legal nurse consulting business that had
200 subcontractor expert witnesses at the
time she sold it. She is now a ghostwriter and
editor. Reach her at PatriciaIyer@gmail.com.
Brody has used subcontractors since the beginning of her business. She says she’s moving toward
using younger speakers, who more closely match the
demographics of her audiences.
Jakubik added subcontractors to increase the
offerings she could provide, and she now has a goal
to use people who can teach the content she currently
provides so she can cut back her high-intensity travel.
FitzPatrick says, “When I set up my business,
like many of us, I was looking to create a job for
myself. But really good people whom I respected
in my industry began to approach me about working
together. I never advertised or sought out subcontractor speakers—a good presenter always approached
me at the right time.”
HIRE SUBCONTRACTORS WHO
WON’T COMPETE WITH YOU
“If you live in fear, you won’t be able to grow,” Brody
acknowledges. She looks for people who are fabulous
trainers and coaches, but who may not be as adept at
marketing or sales. They sign contracts with Brody
and let her know when clients directly approach them
to do additional training.
FitzPatrick says she tackles the issue of competition head-on during initial discussions with her
subcontractors. She has each of them sign an agreement that states they won’t compete with her in the
continuing-education market for healthcare or senior
living, and they will always refer all spinoff business
back to Jenerations.
On an annual basis, Jakubik has her subcontractors re-sign a noncompete agreement. “Don’t bring
on your competitors,” she advises. “I look for people
who enjoy the work as an opportunity extender. I
discuss their drivers for wanting to come on board. I
expect them to have loyalty to clients, the company,
and to one another.”
MAKE SURE YOUR SUBCONTRACTORS
REPRESENT YOUR BRAND WELL
As part of the interview process, candidates who want
to work with Brody need to do a 30-minute presentation to the team and to her, follow a leader’s guide,
and then teach a few programs with a master trainer.
Jakubik rarely has turnover among instructors.
She vets candidates by watching them teach, reading evaluations of their performance, and talking to
people who have heard them. As part of training, new
instructors watch videos of other speakers and are
observed by a seasoned person. ■