The good news is, your entrepreneurial efforts are paying off! You’re at the stage juggling too many jobs and can’t find a balance between work and life (that’s the bad news). With success, and especially fast growth, it can be difficult for solopreneurs to keep up. That’s when it’s time to hire your first employee.
This is the perfect time to get the feelers out to hire entrepreneurial leaders. Someone that is going to be a help, not a hindrance, to your business.
Hiring your first employee can be a daunting task for any entrepreneur. There are plenty of benefits but also drawbacks to bringing someone new into the team.
Whether you’re just starting out and already have too much on your plate or are an experienced business owner, hiring the right person is essential to ensuring success.
Read on to discover everything you need to know about how to hire your first employee.
How To Hire Your First Employee
The first thing we’ll look at is “how to start hiring your first employee.”
When you approach hiring your first employee, you want to guarantee that you have found the ideal person for the job. But how can you guarantee this?
The “hiring” phase can be a long and lengthy process.
To find employees to hire, you need to take the time to evaluate each potential candidate. Do they have the skills and experience to help boost your business? Do you want someone fresh out of college eager to learn and please? Or are you looking for someone with more life experience?
All of these questions and answers are critical in order for you to narrow down who you want on your team.
You also need to create a job description that is designed to attract the best of the best. When looking into hiring employees for your small business, you need a job description that appeals.
A job description isn’t the time to be vague, as you can pay for it later. An ideal job description should list all of the qualifications and requirements for hiring employees, as well as any skills that would be helpful for the position.
You should also consider whether this is a remote position or if you want someone to accompany you on a daily basis. All of these considerations need to go into your job description.
Correctly Define The Role Of Each Employee
When it comes to hiring an employee, entrepreneurs need to be sure that they define the role of each individual clearly and accurately. Not only will this ensure everyone is on the same page when it comes to expectations from day one, but it can also help prevent any misunderstandings down the line.
Employers should give their workers enough training and guidance so that they have all the tools and information they need to do their jobs well. Don’t just throw your new employee into the deep end and expect them to know exactly what to do.
You’re starting with your first hire, but soon after this, you’ll likely fill out the next role, and the next. So, brainstorm the ideal team you’d love to have and the specific roles, and then choose the most urgent role to start with.
Understand Your Numbers
Financial implications should influence your hiring process and your decision-making when taking on your first employee. This means setting a budget for employee compensation, benefits, and other costs that come with having an employee.
You can’t expect your new hire to work for peanuts, so think logically about how much your business can afford to pay.
You don’t always have to employ someone full-time. When hiring employees for your small business, you can hire them part-time, as a hybrid, or on a project-by-project basis. Try out a number of different scenarios and see which one fits your business the best.
Position Employees For Success
When you are ready to hire your first employee, set them up for success. This means giving them a clear list of expectations and daily tasks, as well as mentorship and help when they need it.
When people are open and clear with each other from the get-go, the probability of issues arising later on decreases. You want to keep this employee and help them grow your company. You don’t want to have a low employee retention rate. Having to go through the hiring process multiple times a year is tiring and can negatively impact your business’ growth.
As a business owner, you should make it easy for your first employee to say what they think without worrying about getting in trouble or being judged. A calm but cooperative workplace environment is key.
When Not To Hire
In addition to understanding when it’s time to hire, business owners also need to know when they should hold off.
For example, if the business is going through a slow period and customer demand isn’t as high as usual, it might be best to wait until things pick up before making that commitment.
If you are so desperate for someone to help you, you might hire a candidate who turns out not to be right for the position. If you invest your time and money into teaching and guiding this employee, only to find out three months later that they are not up to the job, this can be bad for business.
They say you should never go grocery shopping when you are hungry, as you will pick up all the trash to eat. The same goes for hiring your first employee. Don’t go searching the job boards when you are desperate.
You Don’t Know What You Want To Hire
It’s important to have a clear understanding of what an employee will be responsible for before taking the plunge. Uncertainty about the type of role you require can lead to later confusion and frustration.
Write down the pain points of your business right now. What things are taking too much of your time? What are the tasks that can be delegated to someone else?
Writing everything down and visualizing where you need help can help you decide on who you want as your first hire. By taking the time to describe what each job entails, you can make sure that the people you hire are qualified and able to do the job well.
You Are Busy
Business owners, listen up.
You need to be aware of how much time it takes to hire and train a new employee. Remember you alone will have to go through resumes, set up interviews, and find the right person to hire. If you don’t have the time, or can’t get a human resource manager to help you out, then don’t hire.
If you rush into things, because you are in a rush chances are you will just hire the first person that sounds reasonable. They might work out, but chances are they won’t be the right fit for the job.
Who Should Be Your First Hire?
Now that you understand some of the work that goes into hiring your first employee for your small business. It’s time to look at the order of things. Who should you hire first?
Here’s a list, starting from the top down, of how to hire employees for small businesses:
Hiring From The Top Down
Working from the top down is the most logical way to hire people. You can see the normal hierarchy of a business as CEO, COO, Operations Manager, Department Heads, etc.
When you hire an executive before hiring someone for a lower-level position, you get years of valuable experience rather than someone who can make coffee and copy.
When you hire an executive, you’re asking someone to help you run your entrepreneurship. The role you hire for will depend as much on your own skills as on those of your ideal candidate, so make sure you know what you need most before you start.
However, hiring for a start-up is different from hiring in any other working environment.
Remember, if it is just you running the show, you have roles that have never been filled before. They’re not substitutes, and you don’t have a blueprint for an ideal applicant, so you’ll need to take a few more steps to create an effective plan.
Think about the long-term and how you want your entrepreneurship to grow in the future. Which employee would be the best hire to get you there?
Find Employees To Hire: Hiring Order
When hiring your first employee, the order in which you bring people on board can have an impact on overall success. Consider the tasks that need to be done and prioritize accordingly.
For example, if you are looking for someone to handle customer service, it would make sense to prioritize this role over a sales position.
Getting a runner as your first employee is a great way to build up your business’s infrastructure. Runners are jacks of all trades. They can be used for many different tasks. They are a great addition to your business if you have found yourself spending too much time on time-consuming tasks that could have been done by someone else.
Tasks such as delivering materials to other businesses or customers, picking up supplies, and even running small errands that require leaving the office.
An executive assistant is there to streamline your business operations. They help you go through your procedures and tasks and find ways of executing them seamlessly.
Hiring an executive assistant can help take over if you’ve been working on one aspect of your business for hours on end. They can learn the ins and outs of your business and be a support for your future hires.
With an executive assistant on board, business owners can benefit from the peace of mind that comes from knowing that their operations are in capable hands. This means you’ll be less stressed about things that don’t matter.
Lead generators are good at finding potential customers, building relationships, and turning those leads into paying customers. They should be your first hire if your goal is to get more customers.
Lead generation requires knowing a lot about the target market and being able to keep relationships going over time. A lead generator can help you identify your most valuable markets and provide insights about your customers’ needs so that you can craft personalized campaigns.
Lead generators also have experience in analyzing existing customer data. They know how to use this information to make powerful marketing plans that get the most out of your money. You can also use an agency for lead generation if you feel unable to fill an in-house position for this. Our clients took that route – they utilize Scaling With Systems for lead generation strategies and implementation, rather than hiring a full-time employee for this.
Director Of Fulfillment
A director of fulfillment’s role is mostly in charge of making sure that customers get their orders on time and correctly.
A director of fulfillment should have knowledge of inventory management, customer service, and logistics. They should have the tools they need to make sure that every step of the delivery process is done quickly and well.
If you’re shipping and delivering a product as part of your entrepreneurship and this is taking up a large chunk of your time, then a director of fulfillment is a great first hire.
This role can help streamline operations while providing customers with high-quality service. Giving you more time to build and expand your business without having to worry about whether or not a customer’s order was shipped on time.
A salesperson can be very helpful to a business because they know how to find potential customers, build relationships with them, and persuade them to buy products or services. Hiring a salesperson has a lot of benefits, like better sales performance, more loyal customers, and lower marketing costs.
With a salesperson on board, entrepreneurs benefit from having someone who is familiar with the needs of their target market and knows how to approach potential customers.
Having an experienced person work solely on sales will help a business’s bottom line without letting important customer service tasks fall by the wayside.
Media Buyer Or Marketing Director
A media buyer or marketing director is a great asset for any business, but especially for ones just starting out.
A big part of this job is coming up with strategies and campaigns that increase return on investment and bring in new customers. They know everything there is to know about the latest digital marketing trends and have a lot of experience using data to make marketing plans that work.
Media buyers are highly-skilled employees in many different areas, such as;
- buying media
- creating creative assets
- managing paid search
- managing social channels.
Having a media buyer or marketing director on staff can help businesses see their performance more clearly, both in terms of the cost of getting a new customer (CAC) and the return on investment (ROI) as a whole.
Sales leaders offer many advantages that can help business owners grow their businesses. They have a deep understanding of the sales process.
They know how to find growth opportunities, both inside and outside the company, while staying within budgets and deadlines. They are also good at hiring and training a new employee for the sales teams so that they can do their jobs better and help the organization reach its goals.
Finding someone who can take the job of “training” away from you is key, so your efforts can be placed elsewhere.
Sales leaders also know how important it is to keep an eye on market trends so they can come up with competitive pricing models that will bring in customers and make money for the business.
Director Of Operations
The job of a director of operations is very important to the success of a business, especially when it is just starting out.
The directors of operations are in charge of making sure that all of the company’s operational processes run smoothly and efficiently. They know everything there is to know about managing large-scale projects, allocating resources, and making financial budgets. This enables them to lead and manage teams in order to achieve organizational goals on time.
They are great problem solvers who understand how to coordinate tasks between different departments while minimizing any disruptions to service quality or the customer experience.
Hiring A Key Role: Integrator
An integrator is a type of business leader who specializes in putting together different parts of an organization into a whole that works well together.
They are often the key to a business’s growth because they know how to bring together different parts, like strategy, culture, and technology, to make the business as efficient and productive as possible.
Integrators know a lot about how different parts of an organization work, from managing finances to taking care of employees. This allows them to get an accurate picture of how all the components fit together, so they can create clear plans that address any potential issues or inconsistencies.
Integrators can also find places where existing processes can be streamlined, which helps organizations save money while keeping operations running smoothly. They understand how investments should be allocated across departments in order to maximize returns on investments and make sure that resources are used in a way that benefits everyone involved.
Skills Of A True Integrator
A true integrator typically has the following skills:
- The ability to analyze complex situations and identify solutions.
- Effective communication skills to convey ideas and information to others.
- The ability to plan, organize, and manage resources to achieve project goals.
- Understand all of the technical aspects of the products or systems being integrated.
- Willingness and ability to adapt to changing requirements and circumstances.
- Lead teams and drive projects forward to successful completion.
Why Do You Need An Integrator
Hiring an integrator as your first hire has many benefits. An integrator is needed in your business, as they can:
- Coordinate the integration of multiple systems or products into a seamless whole.
- Solve complex technical issues that arise during integration.
- Manage resources, schedules, and budgets to ensure project completion.
- Provide technical expertise and guidance.
- Manage relationships with stakeholders and ensure that their needs are met.
- Ensure that the integrated systems or products meet quality standards.
- Identify and manage risks associated with integration and minimize their impact on the project.
- Identify opportunities for continuous improvement in the integration process and implement them.
How To Hire Your First Employee: FAQs
When should an entrepreneur hire?
An entrepreneur should always wait to hire an employee until they have a clear understanding of the job and are financially prepared to do so.
What should a first-time employee do?
The first-time employee should focus on the tasks that need to be done and prioritize accordingly. They should know what is expected of them and have the leadership skills that are needed for bigger roles.
What are the five stages of the hiring process?
To understand how to start hiring your first employee, you need to know the five stages of the hiring process. Which are:
- Job posting and resume screening
- Testing and assessments
- Reference and background checks
- Job offer and onboarding.
Conclusion On How To Hire Your First Employee
By familiarizing yourself with the process and having a clear understanding of what you need, you can make sure that you know how to hire employees for small businesses.
Hire entrepreneurial leaders and integrators who can add value to the team and help propel the business forward and can put you on the path to success.
When done correctly, hiring an employee can be one of the most rewarding experiences an entrepreneur will ever have, so don’t let fear get in the way of finding success.
We help clients grow and scale their businesses quickly. We do this by making plans that help business owners automate and hand off key tasks. Our client acquisition systems make sure that our clients always get high-quality leads. See if you qualify to work with us. Book a free consultation call, and one of our team members will get back to you.