In a small business, it can be exciting when work is overflowing. Busy times are usually indicative of success and growth. Working around the clock to ensure your business’s success can be rewarding and exhausting. So how do you know when it’s time to hire someone new? If you’re turning down work, that’s a solid sign that you do need some help in the office. However, every business will grow differently. It’s important to consider all your needs before taking on a new employee.
Here are the main things you’ll need to assess, as told by Fundera:
Feeling overwhelmed by the length of your workweek is one of the first signs. Many small business owners put in over 60 hours, work weekends, and never take a day off. While this is often necessary for the early stages, this pattern shouldn’t continue once your business is off the ground and consistently turning a profit. However, just because you’re overworked doesn’t mean you necessarily need to hire someone. Take a look at your processes and ensure that you’re working as efficiently as possible. Consider asking a mentor or consultant to look into your practices and suggesting some more efficient ways of doing things. It’s possible time or client management systems could make a drastic difference in your productivity.
Aside from feeling overworked, you’ll need to assess your revenue. Is it consistent? Do you have a profit to reliably pay someone’s salary? It’s best to make sure that you can actually afford a new employee before signing any contracts. If your income is inconsistent or small, you may consider hiring freelancers for smaller one-time projects. Also, consider the health of your business. If you’re working all the time but still aren’t bringing in much profit, it may be time to rework your marketing or pricing strategies. As you gain more authority in your field, you can raise your prices and build your brand.
If you do have enough revenue to consistently pay an employee, the next step is to assess their exact role. Before you even begin recruiting, create a list of duties, requirements and qualifications. Check that the tasks you wrote would actually help the business grow, and are substantial enough for the type of position you are hiring. These tasks should either bring in more revenue or free up your plate so that you can bring in more revenue.
Hiring your first employee is an exciting time for a small business owner. It can also be very challenging. Once you have an employee, you’ll need to learn not just how to be a boss — but a leader. Helping your employees grow is intertwined with helping your business grow.