Successful business owners quickly learn that there is an inverse relationship between the growth of their business and the demands on their time.
In other words, the bigger your brand becomes, the busier you become … and the less time you have to spend working on the “big picture” elements that are essential to building your brand.
It’s a Catch-22.
But there’s an obvious solution: Hire people to help you.
Notice that I said “obvious” solution. Not a “simple” solution.
That’s because hiring outside help is often one of the hardest things for newly successful business owners to do.
After all, YOU know your business better than anybody.
You are the BRAINS behind your business. But you don’t have the be the BRAWN as well.
Building a successful brand is all about scaling your business. If you have the greatest small business ever created, that’s terrific. But it’s not going to mean a thing until you scale it upward to become the biggest mid-sized business … the biggest large business … the biggest (and best) major corporation.
Okay, maybe we’re getting a little ahead of ourselves. Let’s talk about hiring …
WHAT before WHO
The success of your business has led to the discovery that you can’t do it all on your own anymore.
Congratulations! That’s a good problem to have!
You need help. So how can you find people who are going to help grow your business while remaining true to the driving vision you have for your brand?
Before you decide WHO to hire, you need to determine WHAT you need employees to do. In other words: What can you delegate?
Start by making a list of your current work routine. Be as specific and honest as possible. What tasks do you do every day, every week, every month?
Got it? Okay, now take out a highlighter and mark those tasks that are non-essential to the growth of your business. In other words, identify the things you currently do that aren’t doing anything to build your brand.
These are WHAT you can delegate to employees. And knowing that, it’s time to start bringing new people on board.
Finding the Best People
It’s always better to have a very clear understanding of what jobs you can delegate to others before starting your search for help. Not only does it help you clearly describe the job to prospective employees, but it provides you with a clear vision of how your business will operate once they are on board.
The first thing to keep in mind is that hiring people is supposed to help you build your brand, not make your life even more complicated.
So when you can clearly tell people, “I need you to do A, B, and C but X date and time”, you aren’t wasting your precious time managing people instead of managing your brand.
The second thing to focus on is hiring people who can help you, not the other way around. This may sound mercenary, but you are in business to make money, not friends.
Look for people who are:
- Experienced at the specific tasks you need
- Have a strong track record of success within the type of environment you are creating
- Can back up these success claims with proof (references, testimonials, documents)
There’s no way around it: Hiring is a cumbersome process.
If you want good people (and you do) and you don’t want to cycle through a bunch of losers before hitting on some winners (and you don’t have time for that), then investing the time and energy up front can pay off later.
Budget time for interviewing, checking references, and onboarding people with clear and specific instructions.
Then be prepared to supervise and manage people while simultaneously growing your brand and building your reputation – at least until you can grow big enough to hire mid-level supervisors and managers to handle this task for you.
Avoid the Biggest Mistake
There are two types of prospective employees: Experts and implementers.
Experts are people who have a specific knowledge that can contribute to your brand’s success. Maybe it’s previous experience they have had in your field. Or maybe it’s a natural talent or skill they were either born with or learned, such as being good with numbers or being a personable salesperson.
Implementers are people who can effectively perform a specific task as long as they are given instruction and are provided with enough supervision so that they stay on track most of the time.
So which type of employee does your business need? Experts or implementers?
The key to successful hiring is picking the right people for the right role. The biggest mistake is doing just the opposite: Choosing the right people but for the wrong job.
You may hire somebody who is an expert but if you ask them to just do a specific task over and over again, sooner or later they are going to get bored, or frustrated, or both and quit. Or fail.
Or you can hire an implementer but if you ask them to come up with new ideas to grow your business you are going to be the one who becomes frustrated.
So to be successful you need to hire experts for expert tasks and implementers for implementation jobs.
So how can you avoid this mistake? By understanding what your business needs then zeroing in on that specific hire. (Now do you see why it’s so important to understand what exactly you are hiring for?)
Listen, nobody said it was going to be easy.
But the effort will be worth it if you can free yourself from the mundane tasks that are currently preventing yourself from focusing on the key to success for your business: Building a trusted brand.