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When Should a Small Business Start Hiring Workers?

You’ve been a one-person wrecking crew for the entirety of your small business’s life. You’re the CEO, CIO, CTO, CFO and janitor – and for a long time, that’s worked just fine.

But if you’ve been going it alone for a while, it’s time to ask yourself a couple questions:

  • How long can your limited amount of waking hours support a budding company?
  • How many multibillion-dollar companies can you name with just one employee?

The answers, as you might guess, are “not forever” and probably “none.”

To be clear, all-in-one entrepreneurs can keep a startup on their shoulders for a couple of years, but eventually, they need to take the plunge and start hiring workers. The question is, when is it finally time for your small business to finally hire its first, second and third workers?

Here are a few clues.

You’re saying no. The most obvious sign that you don’t have enough help is that you’re outright admitting that you don’t have enough hands to take on more work. It doesn’t get any clearer than that. You are capping your company’s upside by being unable to bring in additional revenues. There are assuredly lots of tasks you’ll eventually become too busy to do – at first, however, you want to focus on filling whatever need will help you grow the business most rapidly. (Typically, this is sales and/or marketing.)

You’re making mistakes. Another way to tell that you’re stretching yourself too thin is that the quality of your work is suffering. If you’re lucky, you may just pick up on these errors yourself – catching accounting errors upon review and fixing them, noticing product flaws before they’re shipped out. If you’re not lucky, your customers will be the ones doing the noticing, and that’s a double whammy of a problem. Not only are you potentially risking future business with customers in your small business’s nascent period, but you’re also jeopardizing any word-of-mouth business you might have earned from delivering a flawless experience.

You’re tapping out. The human body is ultimately a machine – it’s an infinitely complex one, made of blood and tissue instead of metal and circuits, but it’s still a machine, and it requires a certain amount of fuel, upkeep and downtime to operate smoothly. If you’re working 20-hour days, skipping meals and shutting down your personal life, something very well may give. It could be in the form of a physical ailment, or it could be in the form of a mental breakdown. You might justify pushing yourself by saying your business won’t grow if you don’t, but it certainly won’t grow if you’re incapable of working at all for a week while you recover from a significant medical or psychological issue.

The answer, of course, to all of these issues is to hire more people. That comes with its own set of difficulties, but ultimately, it’s the only way you can meaningfully grow your business. So, if you’re experiencing any or all of the signs above, it’s time to get serious about adding to your team.

Still need a push? McManamon & Co. is happy to give you all the details you need to make an informed decision – not just about whether to hire, but how to go about it. McManamon & Co. is a full-service business firm that helps small- and midsize companies with a plethora of needs, and we offer consulting services that tackle almost any issue under the sun.

Don’t let growth pass you by because you don’t have enough people on board. Call us at 440.892.9088 or contact us online, and we can show you all the benefits of expanding your roster.

Tags:  , , , | Posted in Consulting, McManamon & Co., small business