4 May Pet Sitting Blog Ideas

With Summer quickly approaching, many people are going to start going on vacation and taking trips. That means they will need a wonderful professional pet sitting company to come take care of their pets! But how can you make sure they choose you instead of another competitor? Blogging is one of the best ways to get your name and your brand out there. But sometimes it can be difficult to know where to start. So today, I bring you 4 May pet sitting blog ideas that you can draw inspiration from to get those wheels turning in your head.

4 May Pet Sitting Blog Ideas

1. Cash In On the Holidays – Mother’s Day & Memorial Day

Mother’s Day can be a great holiday to write about, because it’s a day female pet owners can think about how much they love being a mom to their fur kid. You could talk about gifts for the dog/cat to give mom on Mother’s Day or even just simply talk about ways to celebrate the occasion. I would also take the opportunity to post some cute graphics of moms and their pets.

Memorial Day weekend can be one of the busiest weekends of the year for our industry. It’s the premiere time for people to hit the beach and kick off the start of Summer. There’s a bunch of different directions you can go with here but some ideas are ways to celebrate Memorial Day, traveling tips, discussing all of the pet care options available in your city, etc. Again – also take advantage of the holiday by hyping it up with your marketing! Encourage people to start thinking about pet care now while they’re finalizing their travel plans. Some simple graphics and “reminders” can go a long away to your Facebook following.

2. Goodbye Spring, Hello Summer!

Like I said above, Spring is quickly coming to end and Summer is ready to dig its heels in for the next few months. Blog about it! You can discuss whether or not it’s possible for a dog to get sunburned or have heatstroke (as well as how to prevent it!), when it’s TOO hot to walk your dog & how to protect their paws from the pavement, and how often it’s okay for a dog to go swimming. Seriously, there are tons of topics here – way too many to list. The next time you’re out pet sitting or walking a dog, make note of any challenges you have involving the weather and then blog about it! I’ve found that the best blogs come from personal experiences.

3. Talk About Summer Activities

Of course, the biggest outdoor activity in the Summer time is swimming. There’s lots of directions you can go with that topic like fun games to play in the pool with your dog, or you can branch out to games to play on the beach and games to play in the park. You could write about 5-10 Summer pet-friendly hotspots in your town where pet owners can relax with their furry friend. Still on the Summer theme, you can write about games to play when it’s too HOT to go outside as well as games to play with your dog when the weather is perfect outside.

4. Check Out The Educational Topics Of The Month

May is Pet Cancer Awareness Month as well as Chip Your Pet Month. So let’s get educational here. You could do a bit of research and write about warning signs that your dog or cat has cancer, best practices to prevent cancer, what to do if your pet has cancer etc. Then with micro-chipping, you can talk about why it’s so important for your pet to get micro-chipped, what exactly micro-chipping is, where to take a lost dog to check if he’s micro-chipped, etc. Don’t be afraid to tie that topic into Memorial Day, since pets get frequently lost on holidays because of all the activity going on.

Feeling Overwhelmed?

Okay, phew! I know this is a lot. So if you’re sitting here thinking to yourself, “There is no way in heck I will ever have time to write about any of these topics!” don’t worry because I have a solution for you. From now until May 15th I am accepting applications for my second semester Better Marketing With Bella Program! For those of you who are new to Jump Consulting or just don’t remember what this program entails, I’ll give you a brief overview. You will get unique blogs every month along with emails, Facebook status updates, graphics, an event blueprint, and a free half-hour coaching session. Plus, if you want to make it even easier on yourself, I’ll even schedule and post all of this content for you for a small extra free. To learn more and apply now, check out this page here.

Better Marketing With Bella

partnership agreements

Partnership Agreements: The $40K Pet Sitting Business Lesson Learned

When you start a pet sitting business, you never think about the end, right? You start your business, all excited, with all these hopes and dreams of changing the world and having all this freedom and flexibility to do what you want.

Right? 

Or maybe you already have this wonderful business going part time or full blast and you meet that (what you think is) love of your life. You get married, no prenup, because let’s face it, neither one of you is made of money… and you live happily ever after.

Or do you? 

Or let’s even say that you and your friend or co-worker decide, “heck! we can do this together!” and you start a business together, skipping down the yellow brick road singing along together. You think this is great! I get to be with someone I trust and make money doing what I love.

But is that true?

partnership agreements

When Beth Green came to Arizona to do a little R&R and business boot camp, we felt strongly that we needed to share her story. We needed to warn the pet sitting industry about what could happen to your business. As we both point out in this video, it is almost irresponsible not to plan for a business dissolution. We plan for marketing, finances, customers, employees, but not an exit plan? It is easily forgotten in the mix, which is why Beth & I really wanted to bring home this very important message.

Why Do So Many People Forget About Partnership Agreements?

A partnership agreement is a document that you sign when you first start a business or a legal relationship (like a marriage) explaining what each other’s roles are in the business *and* what course of action you have agreed to take when one partner wants out of the business relationship. Without these partnership agreements – your business is left exposed and all your hard work could go down the drain.

 

How Easy Is It To Get A Partnership Agreement?

It is as easy as typing it into your friend, GOOGLE, and then editing it to your satisfaction. Have a lawyer give it a look over, and sign it in front of a notary.

If you are starting a business together, the obvious time to do it is at the beginning when you start. For marriage, it would be a prenup. If you are already married, it would be a post nuptial or a partnership agreement.

What Happens if You Don’t Get Partnership Agreements?

Sit down because you might not like this answer. The options are basically this:
1. You have to remain business partners until one of you caves in.
2. One of you will have to buy the other out and argue over what the business is worth.
3. One abandons it and creates a lot of problems.

I am not a lawyer and there might be more scenarios but this is what I have seen as a business coach.

If Your Business Partner Dies, Their Beneficiary Could Also Come After You:

After I posted this article, I got lots of examples flooding in of other people who have dealt with the fall outs of not having a partnership agreement. Take a look at the lesson Lauren’s family learned:

pet sitting partnership agreements

How Important Is This Really Bella?

Honestly – if you are married right now, you need to have this document. As they say, the only thing that is definite in life is death and taxes. I have had about 3 calls in the past 1.5 years about people freaking out because they are getting a divorce and they are scared that they significant other is going to take away the business. They are terrified because it is their livelihood. Their job. Part of what defines them as a person!

It is VERY real.

 

Another True Story That You Have To Read:

Soon after this post went live, I had another pet sitting business owner come forward and tell me her story. She agreed to go on record and have me share it here with you to show you all that this stuff really does happen….

Jessica Greenfield writes:

Hi Bella!
So my story is very long…. Lol. But I’m going to sum it up and give you the parts that are relevant to the topic at hand. Because I could seriously write a book about my experience with being married, starting a business, drug addiction (my ex, not me!), business failure and divorce…
But what really resonated with me about your video with Beth was when Beth said everyone thinks that nothing will ever happen to their relationship because you are in love and everything is great. Or something to that effect… That’s exactly what I thought too.
While my ex husband and I were engaged, he was laid off from his job. The factory he was working at went out of business and we found ourselves wondering what we were going to do. He made 3x as much as I did at my job so it was a hard hit. After a while of not being able to find another job, my ex wanted to start his own business. He had bad credit so of course, I told him to put everything in my name. He started an online business while I worked full time at my job and helped out here and there. I was able to quit my job after a few months and things were going great (or so I thought). We got married and moved out of our house and converted it to a store. Unfortunately, after just a short time, I realized that things weren’t quite right… money missing, I was being lied to about things, and he wouldn’t let me do or look at any of the financials. I found out my husband was on drugs and driving our business and our entire lives into the ground.
Long story short, we went out of business and got divorced. But everything was in my name. My ex moved out of state and avoided getting the divorce papers for almost a year. I needed to file bankruptcy asap so I could start repairing my life and move on but I couldn’t do this until the divorce was settled. So, after much drama and BS, I decided to suck it up and we each took all the debt that was in our own names. I walked away with $400,000 in debt and he got a $1,500 light bill….
So, my story is a little different than Beth’s. Beth had a successful business that her husband was not a part of and then a divorce while I had a husband with a failing business that I was not a part of (I was merely an employee – not part of the business part of things) and a divorce. But I think the moral of the story is the same. You need to protect yourself and make sure you are prepared for any situation. You may think you know your partner, but things change. Business puts so much stress on your relationship. You change, your partner changes, and you are so busy that you may not even notice until it’s too late. Too late to fix things, too late to remain civil and act like grown-ups… Then what?
Believe me, it’s not a good place to find yourself in.

 

If you have a story and you want to share with the world to help inspire others, just post in the comments below or reach out to me and I would be happy to add it here. I want to help as many people realize how uber important it is to have a partnership agreement in their company!

free coaching session

marketing tips for pet sitters

The Do’s & Don’ts of Pet Sitting Business Marketing

Are you stuck trying to decide the best ways to implement effective pet sitting business marketing? Don’t worry – we’ve all been there at some point or another. I completely get it.

I know that there are so many different tools and techniques that you as a business owner can use when trying to market your business. So many, in fact, that it would be impossible to invest in all of them. So today, let’s talk about the most effective (and ineffective!) ways that I’ve found to have effective marketing your pet sitting business.

The Do’s & Don’ts of Pet Sitting Business Marketing

pet sitting business marketing

Do: Community Newsletter Marketing

When I still had my business, one of my most successful forms of pet sitting business marketing was running my ad in a community newsletter. In fact, it worked so well that at one point I had a client on every single street in the community I advertised in. I know this strategy can work for you, too!

The community newsletter that I’m talking about here is a newsletter or magazine that goes out to a certain neighborhood or homes. These typically show owners the values of their homes along with homes for sale, events going on in the community etc.

Keep in mind that this is NOT a newspaper!

To market yourself in the best light possible, come up with an innovative, creative idea for your ad. I know this is easier said than done. But I promise you if you put your brain to work and come up with something stellar, the payoff is huge! Try to thing of something catchy to say that draws your eye and outshines the other ads in the newsletter.

Another important factor to consider is your ad placement. Think about this. When you’re reading a book or a magazine, the most natural place for your eyes to fall is the top right-hand corner. They don’t go towards the middle or to the bottom left-hand corner, right?

This is why placement is so important. You want your ad to be seen, and the best place to do this is the top right-hand corner. If you can’t get that spot, then I would say that the middle on the right-hand page is the next ideal.

I touch more on this topic and others in my video below: How To Know If My Marketing is Working?

Don’t: Mailer Marketing

You may be saying to yourself, “Wait a minute Bella, you just told me I should advertise in community newsletters. How is this different than a mailer?

The thing is really breaks down to is use. In community newsletters, people have somewhat of a use for them. They either are interested in the value or their home, or want to see what events are going on in the community. They’re more likely to keep this newsletter around on their kitchen counter or coffee table. And by keeping the newsletter around – they’re keeping your ad around!

Mailers do not do these things. Think of when you get junk mail. You sift through it for a couple seconds and then boom – trashcan. If you send mailers, this is exactly what’s going to happen to you. Plus, sending things in the mail is expensive. You’re not only paying to make your ad look nice and pretty, but then you’re paying to ship it.

This is a lot of time, money, and effort for very little to no payoff. If you’re going to invest in mailed marketing, community newsletters is definitely the way to go. Why? You will be paying to have your ad run, but then you’re done. You don’t have to worry about shipping it and getting it in the hands of people. It’s a much more cost-effective form of pet sitting business marketing – and has a greater use.

Do: Community Booth Events

Community booth events are the second best form of pet sitting business marketing, directly under the community newsletters. Many of you have probably heard me talk about this topic over and over again – but for good reason! It is because they are so effective that I write so much on them.

While community booth events can be incredibly successful, they can absolutely make or break your business. This is not to sound harsh or mean, but to encourage you to make your booth the absolute best it can be. Community events are a fantastic way to get yourself and your name out there while meeting tons of potential new clients.

They are a chance for people in the community to get to know you and your business. There are going to be a bunch of other businesses there as well (maybe even other pet sitting companies), so you want to make your booth two things: interactive and memorable.

Your goal is to both to connect with people but also to capture their information in a non-obvious way. By this I mean doing something cliche like a raffle that you have to enter with your name and email or simply just having a clipboard where people write down their information (yes I have ACTUALLY seen this here!) is not going to work.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – consumers are way too smart for these gimmicks! So you have to get creative and crafty.

To learn more about the specifics about having a rock-star pet sitting booth, check out my other articles here:

9 Must Have Elements To Have a Howling Pet Event In Your Community

What You Need To Have A Successful Pet Sitting Booth At An Event

How To Have The Worst Pet Sitting Booth At A Local Event

Don’t: Newspaper Marketing

At first glance, newspapers may seem great because they have the potential to reach a lot of people. For instance, my local newspaper is the Arizona Republic, which is state-wide. You might think I’m crazy for not advertising here, but hear me out!

First of all, you’re not going to want to put your ad into a newspaper that covers the whole state or even multiple cities. Why? Because you don’t want to be spending the time, money, and effort to send your ad to areas of your state that you don’t service.

Next, even if you are thinking about putting your ad into a smaller newspaper that is for your town only, it’s probably still not a good idea. Aside from the fact that the number of people that actually read newspapers anymore is declining, newspapers are huge and daunting. They are filled cover to cover with tiny print and tons and tons of ads. So your ad is likely to get lost and not seen by many.

Plus – newspaper ads are expensive! I recommend steering clear of them as far as pet sitting business marketing goes and just sticking to the community newsletters.

Whatever You Choose, Implement and Track!

Regardless of what type of marketing you do, you MUST do these two things: implement and track. It’s not enough to just try a new marketing technique and leave it at that. If you’re not tracking your marketing, you will never know whether or not it’s bringing you desired results.

So, whenever you get a new call or email ask the question,”How did you hear about us?” Compile a list of responses, and the you will really be able to tell where your most effective marketing techniques lie.

free coaching session

 

pet sitter facebook groups

What Makes Up Good Pet Sitter Facebook Groups?

Facebook groups are quickly becoming a premiere way to make meaningful connections and expand your network. There is seriously a Facebook group for EVERYTHING. As pet sitting business owners, many of you may be a part of (or are interested in joining) a pet sitter Facebook group. So, today we’re going to talk about what exactly makes pet sitter Facebook groups worth joining.

What Makes Up Good Pet Sitter Facebook Groups?

pet sitter facebook groups

Screening Process

When joining a Facebook group, it’s definitely important to determine whether or not the group “screens” the incoming members. Generally, it is better that the group HAS a screening process than not. This ensures that the right types of people fit the group.

In pet sitter Facebook groups, you’ll see a lot of non-pet sitters try to join them. This is because some people will join groups in mass to promote their own product/service. So, once there’s too many of these kinds of people, the integrity of the group is lost. It’s now just become a self-promotion page.

For example, in the “I Own A Pet Sitting Company W/Staff” Facebook group (sponsored by yours truly), we message every single person who wants to join the group. Why? Because we want to cultivate a certain type of community. And because we feel that quality is much more important than quantity.

Free Resources For Pet Sitter Facebook Groups

Many pet sitter Facebook groups actually offer group members free resources. You’ll typically see this in groups sponsored by pet business coaches or pet businesses themselves. Some of the free resources we offer in our pet sitter Facebook groups include a pet sitter networking guide, a 20 minute coaching session, and a pet sitting software comparison chart, just to name a few.

Number Of Moderators

Pet sitter Facebook groups usually either have one moderator or a number of them. Typically the moderator is either a pet industry veteran or a pet business coach.

It’s usually better to have a group of moderators in order to ensure the group runs smoothly. Multiple moderators screening incoming members, reading and answering posts, and posting content can all be beneficial to the group.

With a large group, it can be difficult for one moderator to keep up on all of the posts. Multiple moderators help manage what type of content is allowed. This can in turn benefit the overall quality of the group.

The True Benefit Of Pet Sitter Facebook Groups

The ultimate resource of being in these pet sitter Facebook groups is that you can network. Pet business owners can connect with other pet business owners around the country. These groups provide a platform where you can get valuable insider advice and answers to your burning questions. It’s a great way to not feel ALONE in your business – which is really important.

Pet Sitter Facebook Groups

pet sitting facebook group

april pet sitting blog ideas

4 April Pet Sitting Blog Ideas

It’s that time of the month again – no, not THAT time. It’s the end of the month where I give you, my hard working pet business owners, some blog topics and inspiration to help you pump out those blogs for your website! Hopefully these April pet sitting blog ideas will get the gears turning in your creative minds. Don’t forget, blogging is VERY important for your pet sitting business to help it rank on Google. So with that, let’s get started 🙂

4 April Pet Sitting Blog Ideas

april pet sitting blog ideas

1. Take Advantage Of The Holidays – Easter!

Holidays are the bread and butter of pet sitting businesses. People go out of town, make plans with family, etc. which requires them to find a pet sitter for their pets. So, why not blog about it? It not only gives your clients some fun reading material, but also reminds them that you are there for them. Talk about fun outings they can go on to celebrate Easter. Or you can talk about putting on pet-friendly Easter Egg hunts, fun dog-friendly Easter foods, etc. There are lots of options with this one!

2. Talk About The Changing Of Seasons

Ever hear the phrase, “April showers bring May flowers?” April is the perfect month to talk about Spring time and about rain. You can discuss walking dogs in the rain, fun activities to with your dog on a rainy day, how to get rid of the “wet dog” smell etc. You can also talk about grooming tips, allergies, shedding, and other Springtime changes in relation to dogs.

In the Spring time, people’s gardens are coming back as well. And I bet you know more than a few dogs that would just love to get in those gardens and cause trouble. Write about it, and how to prevent it! You can also talk about how to keep a “dog-friendly” garden with safe plants as well.

3. It’s Nice Outside – Discuss Outdoor Activities!

Tons of options here for April pet sitting blog ideas as well. In the Spring, your town is getting in gear with outdoor activities and festivities. This is a great time to talk about community events and things that are going on around town. You can also list what are some great parks to take your dog as well as hiking trails or lakes. Discuss outdoor games to play with your dog like fetch or tag. If you live somewhere with lots of water and swimming, you can write about water games to play with a dog too.

4. Don’t Forget About The Topics Of The Month

April is “National Heartworm Awareness Month”as well as “National Pet First Aid Awareness Month.” These are two fantastic educational topics that you can really speak about. If you have any connections with a veterinarian, ask to quote them. This will give you more credibility as well as help build your relationship with that vet. If you want to look ahead and see what the other topics of the month are, be sure to check out this website.

I hope these April pet sitting blog ideas are helpful to you and are able to give you some inspiration. If you are a pet sitting business that DOESN’T have a blog – it’s never too late to start. If you’re still not convinced, check out these blogs I wrote on Why Should I Blog For My Pet Sitting Business and Why You Should Care About Your Holiday Cover Profiles And Blogging.

Lastly, if you choose to write about any of these topics – be sure to post a link to your blog in the comments section so I can read it. I want to see where your creative minds take these ideas! 🙂

For more content on blogging, be sure to take a look at:

Learn How Two Coaching Sessions Tripled This Pet Business’s Leads By Blogging!

Episode 2: Blogging To 1700 Hits In One Day And Delegating Your Business 

Here Are 5 Important Things To Do After You Publish A Blog Plus 3 Bonuses

Blogging With Bella

free coaching session

5 Reasons Why Not Having Pet Sitting Software Is COSTING You Money

It’s no secret that ongoing innovations in technology can make running a business easier and more hands off. But one of the premiere technology hacks you MUST have for your pet sitting business is pet sitting software – no ifs, ands, or buts about it. Why? Because not having it is costing you more money than you can even imagine. Today, let’s break down why this is the case and then discuss some resources I have for you to decide which pet sitting software is right for you, should you decide to take the plunge.

How Not Having Pet Sitting Software Is COSTING You Money

pet sitting software

1. It Makes Clients Schedule

Do you feel like you’re always on the phone, whether it be texting or calling? Are you having difficulty keeping your calendar updated with all of your pet sits? What about communicating with your employees which visits they’re supposed to do? Pet sitting software essentially takes ALL of these problems away. You’ll seriously be shocked at how much time you’ll be getting back.

Now any time anyone calls to schedule, you simply have to redirect them to your website. Then they can schedule themselves, so you can manage not only your own but all of your employee’s schedules as well!

2. It Makes Sitters Enter In Their Time Off

Suzy needs Tuesdays and Fridays off, but then John needs Wednesday and Mondays off, and you can’t remember which one of them needed next weekend off. Ugh! Seriously – you have so many other better things to do then be a human calendar. Having pet sitting software allows your sitters to enter their time off, so you can schedule pet sits around them. No more having to bounce back between a bunch of different calendars, or go through endless amount of notes. It’s all right there for you, all the time.

3. It Makes Clients Update Profiles Before Trips

We all know those pet parents that are constantly switching routines, food types, litter types, what have you. But no more having to constantly ask and make note of all those changes. Pet sitting software puts that responsibility straight into the clients hands. The software will prompt them to update their information before they leave, and now all you have to do on your end is execute. See how much time you’ll be getting back?

4. You Can Use It To Track Your Sales & Numbers To Project Needs

A lot of pet sitting software function as accounting software as well, allowing you to see your sales and see what most people are buying (A.M. visits, P.M. visits etc.). This will allow you to project what people are going to buy, and can allow you to adjust your marketing accordingly. Plus, this takes away the trouble of you having to create your own spreadsheet to keep track of all of these numbers. It’s already all done for you.

5. You Can Give Staff The Responsibility Of Updating Client Notes

Another time-saver here. When I ran my pet sitting business, it was totally in the hands of my staff to create and update client notes after consultations and as changes occurred. This is something you can do too – provided you equip your staff with the right tools. Employees love software and processes, because it makes their job structured and easier. Now, whenever clients have updates and their unable to put it in the notes themselves, you can give it to your staff to do. Awesome!

Alright – have I convinced you yet? I could go on and on and on of why pet sitting software is absolute necessity for any serious pet sitting business, but these reasons are the 5 big ones. Now, there are TONS of different software companies each with their own set of features. To help you decide, I have a nifty pet sitting software comparison chart that breaks down which companies have what (P.S. – Newly updated version coming very SOON!)

pet sitting software company comparison

 

hiring staff switching from IC's

Hiring Staff Or Switching From IC’s Without Losing Your Mind!

One of the scariest things to do as a pet sitting business owner is hiring staff or switching from IC’s to staff. I mean think about it – you’re literally changing the structure of your business. You’re going from hiring people who have their own company, who know how to do a job to someone who doesn’t have their own company, who wants to be trained, who you get to control & check up on. Those personalities are two totally different things.

Today I bring you 6 steps to successfully make the jump from IC’s to staff, designed personally by myself and Kate McQuillan from Pawsome Media. If you don’t know Kate, she helps pet business owners around the world with their social media and marketing in their business. Be sure to check her out here.

Hiring Staff Or Switching From IC’s Without Losing Your Mind!

hiring staff switching from IC's

Step 1: The IRS Blessing

Little known fact: There’s this awesome government program called the Voluntary Classification Settlement Program (VCSP) that can serve as a HUGE help when making the switch from IC’s to employees.

To simplify it down from the legal mumbo-jumbo, your business pays a small fee and in return you NEVER have to worry about being audited for employment tax again. Consider this as a safety net and an investment for your business. Read more about it on the IRS website, or check out this detailed article I wrote breaking it down for you. 🙂

Step 2: Pricing

You HAVE to figure out your margins.  You deserve to make money – you’re dedicating so much time and energy to your business, that you deserve a handsome paycheck 🙂 If you’re not, let me help you get on track.

People fear when switching from IC’s to staff that there’s going to be all these extra costs, but the reality is you can RAISE your prices and see an increase in business. Seriously! I have NEVER seen a person say “OMG I raised my prices and my business crashed. Never.”

Not everyone has to raise their rates, but that’s when the numbers don’t lie. You have to pay yourself, pay the business, and pay for the labor.

If you’re still unsure how to price your services/figure out your margins to get ready for hiring staff or switching from IC’s, I have an entire guide dedicated to this. Take a look at my Pricing Guide Structure & Strategy, and never be confused again!

Step 3: Building A Team

Gather people you can trust to advise you on payroll, laws, operations, websites, hiring, and cash flow. Without a team in place, you will not be able to efficiently and professionally accomplish everything you need to. The art of delegation will be learned during this step!

You have to evaluate your business and find what your needs are. Picture the perfect demographic of what you’re looking for, and then FIND THEM! You don’t want to compromise – you have to stick to what you need and what you’re looking for. If you do this, finding the right people is as easy as checking off boxes.

Step 4: Creating A Manual

First you need to decide if you’re going to have one big fat employee manual, or are you going to have an employee manual AND a training manual? What’s even the difference between the two? Are you going to have a training manual for each position (i.e. pet sitter, dog walker, office manager etc.)

Ensure that your new staff will understand the rules and regulations of your company. Outline your exact operations and the philosophy of your business so each member can work harmoniously as a team with consistent service time and time again

These are all important questions you have to figure out before you even pick up that pen & paper. When hiring staff or switching from IC’s, you want to have all of your processes and procedures in place beforehand. This will create a successful work environment for everybody.

Hire for attitude, train for skill.

Step 5: Interviewing

You need to learn how to ask the same question in many different ways to see if their answer changes. But most importantly, if you get it wrong: correct and continue.

Learn how to determine the right type of person for your business to grow with. Determine what interview questions, screening, and hiring processes will bring you the best candidates. This is the toughest part of the 6 steps!

Don’t use the all too common excuses of “I can’t hire” or “Nobody can do it as good as me” Hiring staff  or switching from IC’s to staff is an ON-GOING problem. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: You always need to be hiring!

Step 6: Operations

Basically, you have to figure out how to make everything run smoothly. Nobody will want to work for you if they have to ask you questions for every single client they go and see. Communication has to flow through you, the clients, the pet sitter, and even other pet sitters.

You’ll want to have your client feel like you’re at the home and you know exactly what’s going on. That they’re hiring a COMPANY and not just the pet sitter. That nothing’s going to slip through the cracks.

Bottom Line: Operations can make or break you.

Now, I want you to take a deep breath. Is this a lot of information? YES. Does it mean that you can’t do it? NO. I believe in you – which is why I have SO many resources to help you achieve your goals and fit different learning styles.

Download My 6 Steps To Switching To Employees Infographic – FREE!

Employee QuickStart 1:1 With Bella

BOSSES IN CHARGE: The Employee Quick Start Challenge!

Bosses In Charge

pet sitting employee meetings

How To Have Pet Sitting Employee Meetings That Don’t Suck!

When anybody thinks about having to go to a “meeting,” their first reaction is usually to groan and complain. To the average person, business meetings usually mean a overly-long discussion about things nobody really cares about. So how can YOU, as the successful pet sitting business owner break that stigma? How can you have pet sitting employee meetings that are engaging, fun and productive? Today we’re going to address these questions to ensure that your next employee meetings doesn’t turn out to be a flop.

How To Have Pet Sitting Employee Meetings That Don’t Suck!

#1 – The Fun Route

Having a “fun” employee meeting usually means that you and your employees go out and do a fun activity together. This can be things such as a pottery class, mini golf, painting classes, etc. You might be thinking, well what’s the benefit to this? Think about it from the employee’s perspective. Their boss is taking them out for a day of fun! This will show them that you not only care about getting to know them better, but their happiness as well.

This also offers an opportunity for the employees to bond with one another and with you. Overall this will create a stronger team atmosphere, and serves well to keeping your employees happy 🙂

#2 – The Educational Route

An educational meeting is exactly what it sounds like – educating your employees about things pertaining to the company. This can involve going through the training handbook or employee manual. Or, for an extra special treat you could bring in a dog trainer or veterinarian. Your sitters will learn valuable information about caring for the animals.

You might be worried that your employees will find this boring. But, I promise you, they won’t. They will feel like you are invested in them. That you want them to be a better person and a better pet sitter. Everyone will feel loved, important, and like they’re an integral part of the business – which they absolutely are!

#3 – The Team Building Route

This is NOT the same as the fun route. The difference here is that team building events involve everyone having to work together to accomplish a common goal. Team building activities include things such as Escape The Room, Scavenger Hunts, or a group volunteering event.

Team building events break down barriers. They promote people to work together, ultimately getting to know each other better. People will go outside their comfort zones, and accomplish something as a unit rather than an individual.

Employee meetings don’t have to be boring. They can and SHOULD be fun and engaging. Using any one of he above three methods will ensure that your next pet sitting employee meetings boost morale and making your sitters love working for you even more than they already do 🙂

Do you not have employees, but WANT to? Check out my new program, Bosses In Charge, below:

Bosses In Charge

Selected for an interview

What To Say To The Applicants That Weren’t Select For An Interview {Letter Included}

 

Recruiting and hiring the right employees is likely high on your list of priorities. Making the right hiring decision the first time provides long-lasting benefits to your organization.

Communicating with job applicants and keeping them informed of their status, relative to your search, is a key step in managing a successful recruitment cycle. When considering if or how to communicate with job applicants, keep in mind that how you treat job candidates may be seen as a reflection of how you treat your customers. In this age of online (and anonymous) company reviews, it is important to treat everyone who is in communication with your company respectfully and keep job candidates informed.

selected for an interview

Best Practice

Everyone that responds to a job posting with your company should be contacted during the appropriate phase of recruitment to inform them of their status. In order to address the question, I’ll provide a couple of common scenarios. to address today’s question.

 

Scenario 1

An applicant applies and has not contacted you to find out if they will have an interview.

Here is a sample communication that you can tailor to meet your needs:

 

Dear [Candidate’s Name],

Thank you for taking time to apply for our open [JOB TITLE] position. Competition for jobs is always strong, and it was tough to select the group to invite for interviews. Unfortunately, you were not selected for further consideration for this position.

Thank you for your interest in joining the [COMPANY NAME] team. Please feel free to apply for other open positions in the future. Best of luck with your job search.

Respectfully,

[Name of Hiring Manager]

[Job Title]

 

Scenario 2

An applicant contacts you and asks about their status; and/or wants to know why they have not been selected for an interview.

When a job applicant reaches out to discuss their candidacy and wants to know why they were not selected for an interview this can put you in an uncomfortable situation. However, in this pre-interview, screening phase, it is fairly easy and rather common to provide specific feedback to candidates who request it.

Most often, candidates who are not selected for an interview do not meet the basic job qualifications or possesses skills outlined in the selection criteria (for example, years of experience, specific required skills, education, certification or training requirement). If this is the case, you can let the applicant know the main reason why they were “screened out” and invite them to apply for open positions again in the future. However, if they met all of the basic requirements of the job and were still not selected, it may be best to stay quiet on the issue and not provide specific feedback. Applicants who met the basic requirements may not understand the underlying reasons that they were not selected for an interview; for example, an equally qualified candidate who was asked to interview was referred by one of your current employees.

Also consider that in order to simplify the process and to reduce potential liability, it is ok to adopt a “no information provided” policy. In this case, regardless of the reason an applicant is not selected, they would be provided with a polite general statement, such as:

“It is our company’s policy that we do not provide specific or detailed feedback to job applicants who are not selected for an interview. However, we encourage you to apply again in the future with our company as you see fit. We wish you the best in your job search.”  

 

BONUS

To notify candidates who have interviewed for an open position, but were not selected, you can consider using the following phone script to inform them of their status:

Hello, [Candidate’s Name]. This is [YOUR NAME] from [COMPANY NAME]. I’m calling today to thank you again for your interest in the [JOB TITLE] position. We appreciate the time that you’ve spent with us during this recruitment process. I’m calling today to let you know that you were not selected for the position. We were impressed with your background and wish you the best in the future.”

Selected for an interview

Compliance Note

Note that there are federal, state and sometimes local non-discrimination laws that must be considered when managing the recruitment and hiring process. For example, federally, if your company employs more than 15 people, employers are never permitted to make hiring decisions based on a candidate’s: race and color, as well as national origin, sex, religion or disability status.

 

What’s Next:

As you navigate the recruitment and hiring process, you will find a communication style that is right for you and your company. We reviewed just a few important considerations when managing the recruitment communication process, specifically what to say when a candidate is not selected for an open position. We hope you contact us if you have additional or specific questions that we can address!

 

– – – – – – – – –

 

About the author: Niki Ramirez is a seasoned professional consultant, speaker and coach with a knack for engaging business leaders. She is the Founder & Managing Partner at HRAnswers.org. Niki has a successful track record partnering with a wide variety of businesses to analyze human resources and business operations with the objective of collaborating to design cost-effective training, employee relations programs, develop employment policies and procedures, and help business leaders exceed their goals.

Maybe most importantly, Niki is the proud momma to three strikingly gorgeous, intelligent, fun-loving kids. She volunteers for organizations that support education access for children, as well as foster care support organizations. She loves to garden, play with her dogs, horseback ride and get outside to hike and explore the world every spare minute that she has.

 

pet sitters who addressed cost

2 Fearless Pet Sitters Who Addressed Cost Head On

We know as business owners how serious pet sitting is. But, there is still a common stigma around the industry that is it more of  a “hobby.” To combat this, today I bring you 2 pet sitters who helped solidify the seriousness of pet sitting. They are doing this by educating potential clients on the costs and benefits. Additionally, these pet sitters who addressed cost on the Internet for everyone to lets their clients know that they have nothing to hide – showing their transparency and honesty.

2 Fearless Pet Sitters Who Addressed Cost Head On

pet sitters who addressed cost

 

#1 Sit-Stay-Play

Here in Indianapolis, Indiana, Kelley Stewart addresses a highly debated topic head on. She explains why pet sitting is more expensive than kenneling. She describes how very different pet sitting and kenneling are, which is why it can be difficult to compare cost.

You might be thinking, “Why do I want to introduce a potential client to another option for their pet other than my company?” Transparent pet sitters show potential clients that you are honest and looking out for them. Plus, providing them with answers to all of the options shows you have nothing to hide.

 

Sit-Stay-Play

#2 Endless Pawsibilities

Tori Lattig (who we featured in our Transparent Pet Sitters Blog) is one of the pet sitters who addressed cost head on when she breaks down exactly how much pet sitting costs.  She describes how professional pet sitting companies can structure their prices very differently based on a number of factors.

She goes on to explain those factors, and concludes by citing the national average for pet sitting visits.

This kind of post gives the client some background behind why pet sitting prices can fluctuate so drastically. By citing the national average, now the client will be able to compare yours and others’ services to this number. This ultimately helps the client choose the services that’s best for them.

Endless Pawsibilities

When these pet sitters addressed cost, they demonstrated transparency and honesty to their readers. There are other ways to show transparency, but talking cost is key since it can sometimes be a “touchy” subject.

Nobody really wants to talk about it. So, when pet sitters come out and educate the public on why pet sitting costs what it does – it shows that the industry and their business is serious. They’re showing that pet sitting is here to stay.

BMWB 2nd Semester