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Last Update: Monday January 22, 2018

Key Idea: Hire Attitude Not Skill

Leonor Ferrer says that you can teach a skill faster and easier than you can influence an attitude.

Key Question:


Hire people with a great attitude. Before she started her own firm, Leonor Ferrer worked for a large custom broker. At that job, she saw some things she did not want to see in her own company. She learned how not to do some things. Because of this experience, she prefers to hire people who have no experience in the customs business.

Q:  What is the down side to hiring people fresh out of school or who have never worked in your industry before?

A: You have to take time to teach them. Leonor says it is easier to teach skill than attitude. So, if you hire a person who wants to learn and who has a nice personality, you will build a better work team than if you focus only on hiring a person who has experience. Leonor has almost no turnover, which means she spends time in the beginning teaching; but, she keeps people many years, so it pays in the long run.

Think about it

Are you willing to take time to teach? Do you have a process in place to teach new hires?

Clip from: The People Part

All around the World:  In this episode we explore what it takes to build a team. We talk to business owners in New York City, Stamford, Seattle, Chicago, Tucson, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, Dallas, San Diego, and Las Cruces.

The first step in having a sustainable business is to hire good people who are able to carry on in your absence.  As a sole proprietor, we create a job for ourselves and work for our sub-contractors and suppliers.  When you become  an employer, you create jobs for others and put yourself in position to build a legacy and renewable asset.

If you believe your business concept is big enough to live beyond you and if you want to surround yourself with just the right people to make it happen, please study each key idea.

The more successful a business owner becomes, the more likely it is you will hear them say, "The single most important factor in this business is the people." By re-examining very specific parts of prior episodes of the show, we give you the very best thinking about what it takes to grow your business by hiring, training and inspiring others.  This positions you to turn over the leadership when you are ready to make a transition and go on to other projects.

All the key ideas and videos of this episode...
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Ferrer Brokers

Leonor Ferrer, Founder

9840 Via De La Armistad
Otay, CA 92154

Visit our web site:

Office: 6196616755

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Hire Attitude Not Skill

In the Studio

HATTIE: Hi. I'm Hattie Bryant. You've probably heard business owners say, the challenge of business starts when you hire your first employee.

Today we dip back into the programs we've done in the past to give you the very best thinking on the people part of running a business. There is some science to this, but there's more art than you might imagine. Smart business owners have specific techniques for getting started on the right footing.

HATTIE: Leonor Ferrer says attitude is more important than skill.

LEONOR FERRER: I would rather have somebody that's fresh out of school, that has no experience, has absolutely a blank mind, and then I like to train them with my philosophy of work and the way I like to do things. And so that's why I have such a, you know, low turnover, because they know. They know exactly what I expect from them.

HATTIE: Well, you don't have to then undo the old habits that some other broker...

LEONOR: Exactly. Yeah. You know, one time I hired a person from another broker and she spent three months telling me how the other broker did things, and I don't do that well.

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