There comes a time in the trajectory of any growing business when it is time to hire your first employee(s).
Entrepreneurs and small business owners around the world spend virtually every waking moment working diligently to build their businesses. They typically sit atop dynamic organizations, performing all required tasks and single-handedly manning every single position within their companies. Often times, their businesses require them to be the CEO, CFO, Sales associates, and everything in between.
Although, this "go it alone" system may work just fine for a while, there comes a time when any growing business needs to bring on new employees. Simply put: At some point, you are going to need to either hire some help or drive yourself crazy trying to do it all by yourself.
With that being said, knowing when to bring on say, a new sales guy or gal is the tricky part. If this is where you are in your company's growth trajectory, take comfort in knowing you are not alone. According to the National Federation of Independent Businesses' May 2018 Small Business Jobs Report, small business job openings are at record high levels. So when do you know it's definitely time to bring on your first employees? Well, here are some questions to consider.
Can you afford it?
Here is an obvious one. Just because you want to hire an assistant to help boost your personal and/or professional brand does not mean you should simply do it and hope for the best. Typically, a firm that needs an assistant can afford one.
So let me unpack that. What I mean is, once you are in a position to hire someone, and I mean, really in that position, your company's finances will reflect that stage.
You should be able to use revenue derived from a thriving business to hire most of the help you need. As an Entrepreneur or small business owner, it helps to focus on carving out a piece of the market for yourself before you start to throw around cash you do not have.
Do you need the help?
This is a broad question so let me bring it in a bit. When you start a small business, you usually are not sitting on a pile of cash, and let's face it, you really don't know what you are doing in the beginning.
As a result, you are forced to handle every single task/position yourself, even the ones that require experts. You were the one who built your own website, filed your own taxes, drew up legal documents with the help of sites like Legal Zoom, etc.
So now that you have managed to land a few big clients and are finally making some dough, it helps to hire for skilled positions first. You are better served hiring a developer to help build and manage a secure website so your customers' data is protected than it is to hire someone to get your coffee in the morning.
Can you afford to miss out on new opportunities?
As your business grows, it is natural to reach a point where it seems like the floodgates have been open on new business. What seemed like a freaking desert in terms of availability of customers, now seems like a big lake.
You are getting requests for estimates left, right and center. There seem to be more customers than you can handle by yourself. That's because at this point there probably are. Here you have a choice to make: You can either turn away new business to focus on the few you can handle, or you may want to consider bringing on a full time, or part-time employee to help you out.
The thought of bringing someone into your business and the hassle of getting them up to speed may scare you, and I get it. But at this point, if you truly want to build that empire that you once dreamed of, then its time to seriously look at expanding your workforce beyond just you.