Are you an entrepreneur with a growing business? Your schedule is full and you are starting to think about the possibility of hiring your first employee. This is a big decision that can be hard to make. You may be stuck in the growing pains of needing more business in order to hire but needing to hire in order to get more business. If you are feeling the pain of a busy schedule and wondering if it’s time to take the leap into hiring, look for the following signs.
Signs it’s time to hire your first employee
1. You are missing deadlines
The first sign you need to consider bringing on your first employee is when you notice the quality of your work starting to slip because you’re too busy. When you can’t keep up with your job on your own—or you have to work long hours to keep up—it’s time to look at hiring. You find that you’re always working up against deadlines when you used to always complete projects early. Or, you have started to miss deadlines even though you are working overtime trying to make it happen.
2. You don’t have time to work “on” your business
If you only have time to work “in” your business, you are basically working as an employee. To run and grow a business, you need to have time dedicated to working “on” your business. There needs to be time to set goals, handle accounting, focus on sales and marketing, and do strategic planning. If you are always working in the business without time to focus on the big picture, it’s time to hire and free up some of your time.
3. You feel like you’re losing your creativity
When you are overwhelmed with your workload, it’s easy to lose your creativity. The day-to-day tasks take over and things fall into a routine. The passion you used to feel for your work is gone and you start to dread the tasks on your list. When you hit this point, it’s easy to think you need to call it quits on your business and find something you enjoy more, but it may be that you need to hire an employee so you can create space to be creative again.
4. You don’t have the skillset needed
Successfully running a growing business takes many different skill sets. It’s impossible for one person to fill each role to the highest level. As your business grows, you will likely identify areas where you’re struggling. When your business grows and the budget provides an opportunity, hiring individuals to fill these roles is essential for growth.
5. You have to turn away business
Another clear sign that you need to hire your first employee is when you’re so busy you can’t take on any more business. When you hit the point that you can’t take on anymore, you have no choice but to hire if you want to grow. You only have so much time and energy to go around, once it’s used up, you can’t take on anything else.
Ideally, the best time to make your first hire is before you reach the point of full capacity. It’s a bigger challenge to hire and train a new employee when you’re working to the max already.
6. You are starting to receive complaints
An increase in the number of complaints you receive from customers can be a sign that you need to hire. It’s important to look at the reason behind the complaints. It could be that you’re so busy that you are missing deadlines or that your quality has dropped as you try to keep up. Even if you don’t notice the root cause at first, the additional complaints are a red flag that you need to take action.
When it’s time to hire
If you see yourself in the signs above, it’s time to take a serious look at what steps you need to take to hire your first employee. Before bringing someone else into your business, you will want to take the steps of getting processes and systems in place to make the transition easier. If you need guidance as your business grows, SPEARity offers group coaching for small business owners. Contact us for more information.