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5 Efficient Tips For Small Business Owners Hiring Their First Employees

Congratulations, you have achieved your lifelong dream of starting a small business. But the journey to building a successful business doesn’t end there. Here comes the process of actually running and managing a business. You need to market your products/services, do your books, and create content. Now, this is where hiring employees come in. 

I know what you are thinking, “I have seen and heard about small business owners successfully handling everything on their own—I’ll just do everything myself.” Well, good luck with that. While some people are cut out for juggling multiple roles, others aren’t. Owning a business is overwhelming and even more so when you have to sort through countless orders and DMs. Are you ready to handle business affairs alone? Think about this before remaining hell-bent on doing everything by yourself. Or else, all you’d successfully do is mentally, emotionally, and physically drain yourself. 

I  understand the fear that comes with making your first hire. You don’t know where to begin, and you might be concerned about leaving your business in the hands of total strangers. Maybe you don’t know if your business is ready for employees and the financial commitment they require. It is okay not to know where to start. But what’s not okay is working yourself to the ground because you are scared of change. 

I have created this list to help you and other small business owners efficiently hire their first employees with little to no hassle. 

  1. Plan! Plan! Plan! Take a close look at how your business works, the roles you currently fill, and where you need help. Do you need experts or people who are willing to learn?  Figure out how your employees’ position would affect your current workload. Taking note of your needs and the services these employees would render your business will help you during your planning stage. Alternatively, your first hire could be a professional such as a business manager that would give their professional opinion on what you might need.
  1. Budget: If you are a startup with a big budget, you have fewer worries. You can afford to hire as many employees as you’d like or hire a recruitment firm to do all your hiring. But if you are a startup with a modest budget, you can afford to employ just a few people. You can choose to recruit a few staff and then interns for support. In such a case, you’d offer the interns training opportunities and a stipend. For example, if you are a creative firm, you could hire young writers with talents but little to no skills. And while they work with you, you train them to a more professional level. If you run a business that focuses on impact projects (NGOs), you should consider volunteers, especially if you lack the budget to hire full-time staff. For example, if your startup helps abuse survivors, look for people passionate about giving victims of abuse a voice. In essence, you can either “sell the dream” or “sell funds”, but it’s hard to sell both. But don’t oversell the dream and not pay people. Pay the little you can. At least enough to cover the cost of transportation or data. 
  1. Remote or On-site employees: Are you looking for remote or on-site employees? Bear in mind that paying remote workers is not the cheaper option. But whichever you choose matters and would affect overall spending. Hiring On-site employees would procure other costs. You’d need to get a physical space/office space, pay utility bills, and provide healthcare and other benefits. On the other hand, if you hire remote employees, you might not need to establish a physical office space. Still, you will spend some money acquiring software, collaboration apps and web conferencing tools. 
  1. Stage of the business: A business just starting has different needs from one that has been running for a while. Correct me if I’m wrong. Every business needs customers or clients. In the infancy of any business, the main focus is always brand awareness. That is why your first hire should be a marketing expert. And then, you can consider employing a customer representative to communicate with the potential customers interested in your brand. 
  1. Interview and hire: If you decide to conduct the hiring process yourself, a personal interview will allow you to get to know your prospective employees. You can schedule a video conferencing or physical meetup. 

Here are some basic interviewing tips;

  • Make eye contact and establish rapport. 
  • Review the resumé and make notes before the interview. This way, you will have some personal info to draw on.
  • Ask open-ended questions. 
  • Listen more, talk less.
  • Keep your questions focused on the job, and work environment. And when you ask personal questions, don’t be intrusive. 

The goal of the first hire is to take some work off your hands to allow for business expansion. The first hire can be intimidating, but it can also be a great learning opportunity. Focus on first filling supporting roles. As you expand more, you can bring in more experts. 

We offer a host of services that are designed to optimize your business, from early stages to expansion, contact us today!

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