Published October 7, 1998

Hiring a Friend

Business owners hear the advice frequently: never hire a friend or a relative.

Yet most successful business owners realize that the talent pool is often deepest closest to home -- the qualities of trust, character, and competence that are so hard to find in job applicants are often quite clear in friends and family, And when talented people you care about ask you for help in landing a new job, or just some part-time work, the temptation to bring them on board can prove too strong to resist,

So, when is hiring a friend or relative the right thing to do? There is no easy answer, but you certainly should keep these guidelines in mind:

  • All expectations, including a job description, a schedule of performance reviews, and a clear schedule for getting up-to-speed on the work MUST be written down, and talked through from day one.
  • NEVER hire someone you know and care about without a knowledgeable third party