If you wish to sear the roast before placing it in the slow cooker, season with pepper and cook in a hot skillet a couple minutes on each side, then place in the crockpot. I actually like to sear mine with a little bit of butter in the pan, but that's a personal preference. If you don't wish to sear the meat (you don't have to!), just place it straight into the crockpot. Arrange the potatoes, carrots, & onions (if using) in the crockpot too. Cut the potatoes into chunks unless you're using very small potatoes.