When a new franchisee is preparing for the opening of their unit, he or she will have a lot on his or her mind - from finding the perfect location to forming relationships with vendors and making sure a franchise opportunity has all the necessary equipment. However, there are some positions that no amount of financing or equipment can take the place of: dedicated employees.

Hiring workers who are passionate, dependable and hard-working is easier said than done, though. As high unemployment rates continue to plague the nation, with experts such as CNN news anchor and TIME editor-in-chief Fareed Zakaria estimating the total of non-fully employed individuals to stand somewhere around 24 million, finding the right employees can be even more difficult.

At a roundtable luncheon during the Multi-Unit Franchising Conference in Las Vegas, experts discussed a number of ways for recruiting top workers, beginning with creating a respectful culture, the website Franchising.com explains.

What exactly does this mean? A respectful culture entails an environment in which employees are encouraged to solicit ideas and express themselves. "Whether they're being heard or not, creating an atmosphere that embraces people who are expressing their true feelings is the first and biggest step in protecting a company's culture. Encouraging employees to communicate their hopes, dreams, fears and worries is, in and of itself, protective of the company's culture," Inc. magazine writes.

When just beginning the search process, a company's atmosphere may not be top of mind. Rather, franchisees may be focusing more on how they evaluate candidates. To this end, franchisees at the conference suggested that not only should units use personality tests and online apps to solicit and rank candidates, but also to embrace the "on-the-job interview."

This type of interview, according to Franchising.com, is held by inviting top candidates back to be paid for a day on the job, allowing franchisees to evaluate if they have the raw potential to be a good fit with the franchise.

Lastly, franchisees should establish and then communicate to potential workers a system of feedback and recognition, including quarterly and annual reviews, awards and even daily comments and compliments to let workers know what they are doing right and how they can improve.

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