The Pop Quiz, Monday is a fun little exam that we love to give to savvy business owners. The examination is not a surprise after all since the interviewee already knew about the questions in advance. However, we can always pretend and have fun with the scenario of a young entrepreneur sitting in class nervously biting on their pencil. They are ready to take a pop quiz on a chapter that they were supposed to read the night before. Instead, they played Metroid all night on their SNES (Oops, this was me in high school). The real purpose of the pop quiz is that this is a fun way to introduce business tips from real-world experiences that you can not learn in a classroom. We want to thank our entrepreneur for being a good sport and volunteering their time to answer a few questions to help our community grow from their knowledge.
I want to introduce you to our guest today who will be taking our Pop Quiz Monday.
Can you please tell everyone your name?
What is your job role?
President and CEO at KNF&T Staffing Resources
Tell us about your company?
Established in 1983, KNF&T Staffing Resources is one of the leading women-owned staffing businesses in Boston. But, we’re more than your average staffing firm. We go the extra mile. Our mission is to provide best-in-class customer service, acting as a natural extension of our clients and candidates to find the right fit.
We are passionate about helping businesses grow and about helping talent find a rewarding career. We specialize in placing talent in Direct Hire, Contract, and Contract-to-Hire roles. Plus, we have a Diversity Search division.
Adding to this, philanthropy is a big part of who we are. KNF&T’s philanthropic goal is assisting women and children in transition. To that end, we encourage employee volunteer days, hold food drives and toy drives, and partner with local nonprofit organizations.
What do you love most about your job?
It’s really rewarding to help people. Before I became the sole CEO of KNF&T, I worked as a recruiter assisting people to find jobs. Years later, I’m amazed to see the positive residual effects that’s had. Recently at an event, I was approached by a woman who reminded me that I placed her in her first job and then coached her for a promotion. She’s now a high ranking human resources executive and said she often thinks of the advice I gave her. I was touched by her story and grateful to have played a part in her career path.
What motivates you to get up every day and go to work?
Providing a better service each day and working on developing a company culture that supports those goals.
How do your co-workers inspire you?
My team inspires me every day. When I see someone go above and beyond to help a client or stay late to meet a contract worker to give them their paycheck, it really inspires me to continue to empower them. Seeing employees grow and improve their skills is rewarding.
How do you have fun at work (team building, pranks, etc..)?
One of our core values is to have fun – it’s important to us because we all work hard and you need to balance that out with fun to stay sane and happy. We incorporate team activities like birthday parties, summer outings, volunteer opportunities, and have monthly events like our hot chocolate bar for Valentine’s Day, our doughnut eating contest, or our pie bake-off around Thanksgiving.
What are some of the challenges of your job?
Technology is a cornerstone in our business operations – from job boards to systems that we use for finding talent, to our database, and more. Technology, of course, is always changing. We’re a small company but we run like a big business, so it’s essential – but challenging – for us to stay on top of the latest updates to remain efficient and competitive.
What are some lessons learned from a past project that you can share with us?
Trust, but verify. What I mean by this is that if there is a conflict at work, trust what people are telling you but collect more information from both sides before taking action. Being in a leadership position means you have to act like a judge – weigh both sides rationally before concluding. If someone complains to you about an issue, don’t react emotionally. Take some time to collect facts, see the other perspective, and account any other elements that may have been a factor. Ask for specific examples. People will respect you for this approach.
What advice would you give to someone who is starting in your industry?
If you’re entering the recruiting world, my most significant piece of advice is to listen to your candidates actively. Too often, people are reduced to commodities in the staffing business – recruiters try to push them to a certain job that fits their goals rather than something that the candidate wants. Don’t be that person. Instead, listen to what your candidates want and wait for the right opportunity. You’ll build better and longer lasting relationships, gain an excellent reputation, and likely have more referrals.
Thank you for taking our pop quiz today. You get an A+ for effort. You can learn more about our interviewee and their business by visiting them on the web: