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Welcome to Michael's blog. Michael Andrew, (aka Michael The Maven) is a freelance producer, photography instructor, tech innovator, and when needed, disaster aid specialist. Disclaimer: Michael is a participant in Bhphoto & Amazon affiliate programs that provides an advertising commission if you purchase through links on this website.


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06.03.11         michael's insights  

Michael's Assistant Search Update


Wanted to give everyone out there, especially those of you who have applied- an update on the Assistant search and also offer some feedback and information. First let me say thank you to everyone who has applied. I cannot express how excited I am to have a full time assistant. Every submission I get is carefully read and then put into a unique folder. All applicants are considered possible hires, and are ranked on the following:

1. Ability to follow instructions
2. Qualifications of Technical Skill
3. Communication Skills
4. Positive "Attitudeness"
5. Hardware Specific Expertise

While the search is still on, most of you have not heard back from me simply for the fact that I am leaving it open for entry all the way through the end of June when I will begin contacting those who are in my top group of candidates. If you are in the top group you can expect to speak with me on the phone sometime in the last week of June and the first week of July. The job will be offered to someone a day or two after July 4th. It isn't necessary for the candidate to have all of the skills I originally listed, in fact, as of this posting, none of the applicants do, but the more the person has the better.

I am generally seeing 2 groups of applicants:

A- Applicants who are solid at following instructions, with some of the technical skills missing.
B- Applicants who are mostly technically qualified, who did not follow instructions.

While it may seem like a harsh thing, I tend to prefer those who can follow subtle instructions over technical skills because I know can I teach them. It is crucially important to me that whomever is hired listens to instructions carefully, and if I do teach them certain skills, that they can pick it up fast and run with it. If I have to re-teach or re-explain things several times, it isn't going to work out. If you are one of the applicants who has missed part of the application process, you can still complete your submission, but it is up to you to determine what is missing and send it in.

There was also a third group of people who sent in inquiry emails. As some friendly advice; asking about your "relocation compensation package", "helping with a work visa", "Computer Purchase Advance" or my "being patient with you as you learn" before you even send an application in is bad form. When I read comments like this, it is hard for me to take them seriously because I feel applicants are looking at me to solve some of their problems and are less concerned with helping me reach my business goals.

When I find the right someone who understands this and is focused on lifting the load off of my shoulders- they are going to do great.

Ultimately, my goal is to open a production studio here on Maui. There is a tremendous amount of work to do, but if this first assistant is the right fit, there is a huge opportunity for promotion. I see no limits on possibilities- if the individual(s) are bringing assets and good work ethic to the table, we will be successful, and there will be more hires. To give an indication, I hired my second App programmer this week- which is also very exciting for me.

I have gotten a few questions about what the work week would be like. This is what I have planned for my assistant:

Assistant's Daily Tasks:

1. Answer Customer Emails
2. Marketing Tasks
3. App Testing
4. Various Errands
5. Website Maintenance

Weekly Tasks:

1. We will be shooting 1-2 times a week on location on Maui. Assistant will help at most of these with setup, and shooting. I would like to be shooting every Monday morning.
2. Editing and posting of Videos
3. Some Website and Art Design
4. DVD Authoring.

For the most part, my assistant will be able to work from home, at hours he or she chooses, but they can still expect to work 40 hours a week. Bonuses will be given for projects completed at the end of the week.

So far out of all the applicants who have applied, no one is a run away lead candidate. There is also a very real possibility that the a few months after the first assistant is hired, there will be a second position opening- much of it has to do with the success (or failure) of the first assistant.

Thanks again so much to everyone who has applied, I look very much forward to hiring someone in the first week of July.

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