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Navigating your next hunch to hire

~ by Candice R

Founders often make the mistake of hiring as a problem solve without considering alternative resolutions or at least interrogating the serious decision to take on an employee. This is why many make mistakes on their first hire, then learn hard lessons, both them and the hired human involved.

It is common for the Founder to feel like they are drowning, hiring help (admin, finance, operational, you name it), only to be left with more employee responsibilities and often, little real alleviation of the pressures they face. It is wise to chart out your challenge and exactly what your new hire strategy is expected to resolve. Yes, this is a deeply strategic decision for your business, it impacts time, money, business model, revenue model, amongst others (not to forget how it impacts another person’s life!). This means listing all of their expected activities, and outcomes, and correlating this with how the challenges faced will be diminished - and not forgetting to consider what new challenges can potentially arise.

For example, we considered hiring admin help but after charting what we could hand over to such an employee we realised we still wanted to have control over financial information and this lessened our ability to pass on many financial related tasks. We had also, over time, implemented ways of work and processes that eliminated laborious admin hours. After much interrogation, we realised that, in fact, there was little left to fill an administration role that would add enough value to the business and to that potential employee's purpose. We would have inherited an obligation to that person's job and role which was another area of pressure not worth entertaining.

In another example, we spent hours sourcing images for our content writing, and after charting this challenge, it was clear that there was enough work to hire an illustrator which saved us hours of time and much effort and stress. We went one step further in solutioning this and didn't actually hire, we found a better solution. We collaborated with an illustrator looking to grow their portfolio who worked independently ,eliminating all the employee baggage for our lean business. Worked like a charm, for both parties and we have a long standing business relationship today, both our and her business is better for it.

The point is, when charting out why you think you need to hire, the exercise in itself exposes the right path when given enough focus and deep thought. We need to ask ourselves, how are the people we bring in and make part of our organisation, going to contribute to your business bottom line or your quality of life as the Founder behind the business. This exercise helps find creative ways to get to other solutions over hiring a person to fix the challenges we face. Alternative solutions almost always reveal themselves. Sometimes other challenges surface which require addressing. Either way, it is the start of getting closer to the right resolution for your business and your best interests as an entrepreneur. Hiring carries a lot of responsibility because we are dealing with a human being. You do not want to realise you have made the wrong decision after hiring them - the impact can be damaging to more than just your business, but to the person and their family.

Work with Candice R

“Solving niche challenges founders face”.

Illustrator: Lisa Williams (Instagram: @artist_llw)


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