After Parker left to go see Avery, Dani and Zavier sat down to wait for Kenya to arrive.
Dani: We used to work together a while ago, but now she works in retail and manages a department store location. The company she works for is very good at selecting employees who can provide great customer service. She does a good job, so I think she can help me select the right employees.
Zavier: Oh! Okay. I wish I could help you, but I have no idea about selling wedding stuff.
Dani (laughing): Honey, you've done more than enough already. And you're here, so that's helping me alot.
Dani can see Kenya has arrived so she gets up to greet her. Zavier and Kenya have never met, he has just heard about her as he has heard about Dani's other co-workers occasionally.
Zavier: It's very nice to meet you.
Kenya: I'm pleased to meet you as well. Dani is so lucky to have such a supportive husband. I mean helping her with her own bridal store. She told me you surprised her. I love it!
Dani: He is wonderful. I think I'll keep him a little longer.
Zavier (smiling): I think investing in her dream will yield great returns. So it's worth it. I'm glad you're here to help her.
Kenya: I am flattered she values my opinion. We're going to get her some good employees.
Zavier: Well, I'm going to get out of your way so you can do what you need to do. I'll go hide and you can let me know when you done.
Kenya: Thank you.
Dani: Kenya, please have a seat. I'll be right back.
Dani heads toward the storeroom with Zavier so she can talk to him for a minute.
Dani: Nothing. I'm a little nervous, but I'll be fine. I can't believe I'm about to hire my own employees. Can you believe it?
Zavier: Just breathe. We're almost there. In the home stretch and you'll knock this out the park. Okay?
Dani: Sure...Of course. I'm excited. Thanks, Honey!
Zavier kisses Dani and then heads to the storeroom. Dani takes a seat to chat with Kenya while they wait for the first interview to arrive. Because it's the evening, they did not schedule a lot of interviews, just four. Dani spent quite a bit of time phone screening candidates who applied to her online advertisement, based on Kenya's thorough pre-screening questions. If she doesn't find the employees she needs this evening, she'll keep looking.
Dani: Four are expected. I spent a good 30-45 minutes with each on the phone using the questions you provided and your advice. I like all four so far.
Kenya: Good. Then we can only hope they are just as good in person.
Dani: What if I like all four? I only need two.
Kenya: Liking all four is a good problem to have. It's not liking any of them that will be the problem. Now, remember, our approach is to have a nice conversation, understand if they can provide the service you want for your customers and can they learn to help you run this business.
Dani: Most importantly, can I trust them? I won't be able to be here every day if I need to do some marketing and get some rest and take a vacation at some point. Or even if I'm sick one day. Trusting someone is really important.
All of the candidates arrive at their scheduled interview times and Kenya and Dani interview them. We don't have time to sit in on all four interviews, but we can drop in during part of two. The first one we'll eavesdrop on is Bailey Banks'.
Bailey: A wedding is a very important day in someone's life. Women tend to be more emotional and excited about it. They want everything to be perfect. Part of that perfection is a bride looking her best when walking down the aisle. It has to be a 'wow' moment for the guests and the groom. It would be my job to ensure that she gets that 'wow' moment.
Dani: I like that.
Bailey: Well, it won't be easy, but that's the challenge. My job is to mentally prepare to deal with all sorts of personalities and be humble enough to understand sometimes there will be some unreasonable demands and expectations. My job is to take notes, remember things, follow up, make sure things arrive on time and communicate well. My job is to work to be perfect and make each customer's experience here special and all about them.
Dani: Great answer. I have two more questions. First, you mentioned personalities and unreasonable demands. Do you think it's your job to just deal with the treatment?
Bailey: I know apologizing can go a long way. But I also think there has to be a line where you have to demand a level of respect so that you are not treated disrespectfully. I know the difference between catering and being mistreated. I know not to allow someone to mistreat me, but also do so professionally.
Dani: Good. Last question. I've spoken with some good candidates and need to hire only two people. Why should you be one of those two people?
Bailey: Thank you so much. I'm very hopeful you'll let me show you what I can do.
Dani and Kenya wrap up Bailey's interview. They both think it went well. There's another candidate whose interview is interesting - Felice Hearns.
Felice: No, it's been hard not working everyday since my layoff, but I have kept myself busy. I joined a workgroup hosted by the unemployment office. I've volunteered to work at a homeless shelter and a group home for young ladies who have children. They need mentoring and help with life skills. It's been great to help them. They look to me as sort of a second mother at times because of the guidance I provide. So it will be great to earn money again while I'm productive.
Felice: When we spoke, you shared with me that you work in another field and opening a bridal salon has been your dream. You worked to earn a living until you were able to do something you enjoy. Working at the bank was a job and I liked it, but mostly, it paid the bills. Fortunately, I was good at saving money and I got a decent severance package. I find myself presented with the opportunity to do something different. I've been selective about where I've applied. I know I will enjoy helping brides find just the right dress and accessories for their big day. My enjoyment will just add to their experience.
Felice: Yes. I've done some sewing in the past and I'd like to take a refresher course along with working personally to improve my skills. Will you have a need for seamstress help?
Dani: Yes! That would definitely be a plus. I'll show you how I take measurements to alter dresses, but having help with alterations would be a huge help for me.
Felice: Well, I'd like to do so. Of course, I know you'd like to see me demonstrate my skills first so that I don't run anything, but I'm very interested in alteration work as well.
Dani: I can tell you that it would be extra money for you if you can do alterations since I do have to charge extra for some alterations, especially if they are major.
Felice: Well, I would like to help with alterations and that would help your workload. I've worked steadily for years and barely missed a day at work. I would have to be falling apart ill to have to call out. I how to draw people in and I think that will make me a wonderful salesperson. I'll keep myself educated on the latest trends so I can help you with merchandise decisions and education brides who need help. If you want a great employee who will appreciate working here, I'm your person.
Dani and Kenya wrap up the Felice's interview and the last one. Then they chat for a few minutes.
Dani: Yes, I do think two stood out for me and I like the mix. I can see Bailey's youthful approach would be great for connecting with brides. I can also see how Felice gives that knowledgeable, motherly vibe. I also like that she's interested in learning to alter, which is a huge help. If my volume grows, it could be hard for me to keep up with alterations and outsourcing could cut into my bottom line.
Kenya: You know what you need and what will work for you, so go for it.
Kenya: No problem. You are very much welcome.
Poor Zavier was pretty hungry and so was Dani. They did manage to stop at a fast food restaurant on the way home.
Thanks for stopping by. ~ Jaye