This article was first published in Display Ads Deep Dive
I love my cousin Frank, and he’s an awesome chef who makes the most amazing BBQs, and that’s a fact. We used to be the best buddies as kids, but life has taken us through different paths, and now we see each other now and then in family reunions where we still have that best-buddies vibe and everything. Recently, my mom told me that her sister Georgia (Frank’s mom) told her that Frank quit his job as a chef in a gourmet restaurant because he found that digital marketing was actually his one true passion. So Frank has now enrolled in an online course of marketing and digital advertising and is looking for a job in the marketing universe, more specifically as a PPC expert (which he says he soon will be). And of course, my aunt Georgia had no better idea than to ask my mom if my marketing agency didn’t have any openings for PPC specialists. So what on Earth should I do about my knowledge-less and even more experience-less cousin? Well, that’s what we are here for today.
If you have ever been in the awkward position of having to decide whether or not to hire a family member, then for sure today’s article is for you. Because today we’ll be diving into all the factors to consider before actually going ahead and saying “yes, aunt Georgia, I have a job opening right here waiting for Frank to fulfill it!”. And of course, there are a lot of factors to consider. So let’s jump right in, shall we?
Are you actually looking to hire someone?
If you have an open position and are looking to hire a PPC, and then an interested PPC family member comes up and wants to be interviewed for it is one thing, but having no positions open and receiving the question of a family member asking if you’d hire them is a much different one. Of course, it is always hard to say no to a family member that’s in a complicated situation and needs some help, but it is also complicated for some companies to hire PPCs that they were not looking for. So, for starters, you should definitely make sure that your company not only wants to hire that someone, but can actually face the cost of doing it.
Is this person actually qualified for the job?
My cousin Frank might be an incredible chef, and BBQs at his garden can be awesome, but that doesn’t guarantee at all that he’ll be a just as good PPC. So before jumping right in and saying “yeah, he knows some marketing, he’ll do fine”, you should totally check that the person actually knows what they need to know in order to be a good fit for the job because, otherwise, you may be committing serious nepotism. And we definitely don’t want that.
As an interesting tangent, we can definitely run some thoughts on how important the experience is when hiring a PPC. I believe that, whenever you are hiring people to work in your company, the criteria should stay overall the same. Of course, some positions will require 10 years of experience and, if that’s the case and Frank doesn’t have 10 years of experience, then maybe I won’t hire him. However, if you are more flexible when it comes to experience, and actually enjoy training new PPCs, then this should also apply to training Frank.
How close are you (or your family in general)?
I believe the closeness, in this case, might come in as a double-edged sword. Why? Easy. Frank and I were best buddies, but no we are only close enough to see each other every once in a while. So I know him well enough to know he’s a responsible and hard-working guy that will probably create great ad campaigns, but we are not so close that life would be unbearable if anything goes wrong. This is really important because, when hiring a family member, you’ll always have to make sure you are close enough so you know what they are all about, but not too close so an important relationship can get terribly damaged if working together ends up not being a great decision.
And this takes me to a second point. So Frank and I, as I said, aren’t really super close anymore. However, aunt Georgia and my mom talk to each other literally everyday and go get brunch together every Sunday, so, if anything did go wrong, then their relationship could get seriously jeopardized, and end up being collateral damage. There definitely is no right or wrong way to go in this case, but the most important thing will always be to keep clear and honest communication. Everyone knows that things may not go so well, but it’s still essential that you make sure everyone involved keeps it in mind in order to not let work trouble escape the walls of the company.
How will your team feel about it?
Of course, your company won’t only be you and the PPC you hire. Your family members will also have to work along with the rest of your team, so it’s really important that they feel comfortable with the idea of working with someone who pretty much has known you since you were a baby and everything that comes with it. Of course, this doesn’t mean that you’ll treat them differently, but there are very high chances that your team might feel like you do because that’s how humans work. So, first things first, it’s really important that you sit down with your team and have a conversation with them about their thoughts and inquiries about receiving a family member of yours in the company.
So the bottom line here is quite simple: Hiring a family member is not a good or bad thing itself, but it always should be considered with its own context and factors. However, some general aspects remain untouchable in every single scenario such as keeping proper communication with everyone involved, making sure no one feels uncomfortable (including yourself) and making sure that, no matter what PPC you hire, you treat them just as any other member of your team.