Business is great. You are getting more clients than you thought possible. You are doing work that you love. Well, mostly. You have a million things to do, but that’s okay. This is your dream. Your business. Your baby is finally coming together.
So you work the 10-12 hour days. You hastily say goodnight to your child, because you still have “some stuff left to do.” You are tired, but blissfully so. This was what you’ve been hoping for all these years. For the business to have a waitlist. To have your plate full. To have a thriving business.
But you are tired. You are drained and find yourself getting a little impatient with your clients, though you know it isn’t their fault. Not really. You don’t have time for that family movie night anymore, because “sorry honey, I really gotta get this done tonight.”
So often business owners work themselves into the ground, because they don’t have a plan. Well, they do, but it’s often getting the business off the ground. Beyond that, they don’t really have a plan. So you work yourself into the ground and convince yourself that it’s fine, it’s temporary and you will find a way around it. But deep down you know that there’s no way around it. You’re maxed out.
But hiring is scary. Can you really do it? Can you really trust someone else with your business - your baby? After all, you’ve worked so hard on it. You know your business.
The truth is, you know you need help. But who? How? Where to start? What to expect? And those are all super valid questions. It’s hard to bring on someone else. Here are some tips to make it easier.
To get you inspired and encourage you on growing your team, here are what some other business owners have to say about their first hire and how that helped their business grow.
>> Insert 5 case studies <<
Start with an Organisation Chart
It’s your turn now, but where to start? I understand how overwhelming it can be, and want to help you get started on the right foot. So often, we start hiring only when we’re in over our heads and we are desperate. So we hire to fill the gaps. But this can be disastrous. We want to hire intentionally and know that it will help us grow not only our team, but our business.
If you’ve read The E-Myth Revisited, you would’ve heard of this concept. Basically, start by envisioning the future of your business, whether that’s your end-goal or at least 5 years into the future. What does your business look like?
In order to facilitate that dream business, what roles and departments does your business need to have? What support do you need?
Download the Organisation Chart below to help you out:
Start with yourself as the CEO, then, map out all the roles that is required to support your dream business. Then, see yourself as the employee of all these roles. Yes, you can even pen your name in every box.
This exercise is what I do with my coaching clients all the time to help them determine the roles they need to hire eventually to help support their dream business. Without this organisation chart, you will more than likely hire to fill the gaps instead of being intentional about it. What that does is you end up hiring help that isn’t crucial to your business and takes from your company, instead of adding to it.
A great hire not only takes things off your plate but helps generate income, directly or indirectly.
Hire Intentionally, Step by Step
With your Organisation Chart in hand, first ask yourself this: What roles do you absolutely hate your name next to? What do you know is needed in your business, but you really dislike doing? Circle those with a red pen.
Then, ask yourself this question: Which roles seem easy enough to outsource very cheaply (think the US$5-20 per hour virtual assistants)? Those that are mundane and repeatable, and don’t require your micromanagement? Circle those with a green pen.
Lastly, ask yourself this: Which roles can be automated or systemitised? You don’t have to know the exact way you’re going to systemitise it, but you know of a tool that can take this off your plate. Circle these with an orange pen.
These are the roles you can focus on eliminating, first. By allowing yourself to avoid the jobs you absolutely dislike, you can focus on your genius zone and be more productive. By outsourcing simpler tasks, you can shave precious time off mundane tasks and free up time to work with clients. And lastly, by sitting down and spending time to set up a system, you can automate processes with very little money spent.
After these questions, if you’re still up for it and want to grow even further, start to circle with a purple pen the roles that generate sales or are supporting sales efforts. By pinpointing these roles early, you can start first to record down processes and SOPs (standard operating procedures) so that once you have the ability, you can outsource these roles first.
By focusing on income-generating hires, your hire becomes an investment and not an expense. You start on the right foot and each hire produces even more income, either because it frees you up tremendously to do the work that grows your business, or because it simply brings in more business.
Tips for making your first hiring process smooth and easy
Make a list of the things you want done, pertinent to each role. Just brain dump it and organise later, if that’s easier for you.
Set your budget and research what you can get for the price. Different price points will get you assistants or contractors of different skill levels, so set your expectations and apply that budget accordingly.
Find a specialist instead of a general assistant, if you can help it. There are many great assistants out there, but a specialist one can help you do the things you want done faster and with better quality.
Trial first. As they say, hire slow, fire fast. I don’t completely agree with that statement, but it is good to trial your assistants or contractors first with a smaller project, before you entrust them with a proper role in your business.
Have a contract and be clear on everything, including your tasks. Especially for virtual assistants, a clearly laid out task ensures a better result. Make them concrete so it’s a one-and-done, not a back-and-forth job, since most of them charge hourly rates.
Let me know
Are you prepping to make your first hire? If so, who are you looking for? :)