How can adding to your team and hiring employees maximize your time, freedom, and business success?
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average worker spends 33.8 hours at work each week. Yet, this isn’t the case with entrepreneurs and business owners. A poll conducted by the New York Enterprise Report found 33 percent spend 50 hours at work, plus another 25 percent who exceed 60 hours a week. This doesn’t include the 70 percent who work weekends on a regular basis.
Here’s the deal, though—excessive work hours indicate a person’s time isn’t being well spent. A study conducted by Stanford University shows that people max out their productivity when they work more than 55 hours a week. In fact, people who work 70 hours are no more productive than those who work 55.
Once your business starts expanding, begin implementing the key hires listed below. They will increase your productivity, happiness, and freedom by allowing you more uninterrupted time to focus on your priorities and goals. Additionally, these team players can keep the business running with excellence by doing the jobs that aren’t in your green zone—the area where your purpose, passion, and unique gifts collide.
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Why Hiring Employees Who Work in Your Red Zone Matter
Most entrepreneurs start their companies to ultimately enjoy more freedom—personal, professional, and financial. But with the numbers above in mind, how many business owners actually experience it? Research published by the Journal of Business Research found that out of 500 business owners, nearly half of them felt entrepreneurial regret, despite their business success.
What is causing this unhappiness?
When business owners work in their red zone, the areas in which they survive, rather than thrive, they begin driving themselves toward failure. Working out of alignment with your unique gifts and purpose (green zone) causes this regret, lack of passion, decrease in drive, and increase in unhappiness. It makes business owners feel controlled, burned out, and far from free.
You need key hires who can protect you—your time, your energy, your passion, your happiness, and your focus.
The great news is, there’s someone who was born to do all the things that are burning you out. Their gifts complement the tasks that take away from the time you need to work in your green zone. They keep operations running smoothly and breathe life back into the goal of more freedom—the reason you started the business in the first place.
Top 3 Hires for Your Top 3 Business Problems
Below is the top hires every entrepreneur should make first so they are freed up to best serve their company through their talents, purpose, and passion. Hiring employees who are “A” team players in these key positions solves some of the top problems that cause business failure, plus they set owners up for more success, growth, and freedom.
Problem 1: Not Having Enough Time to Focus on High-Value Work
Solution: Hire an Assistant
When hiring employees, one of the best moves an entrepreneur can make is to find an all-star assistant. In essence, assistants take ownership of responsibilities that are not within a leader’s green zone. Someone who performs well in this role is a guard—they defend you from burnout and distractions that prevent you from working on top priorities. A great executive assistant has been described by CEOs as a “second brain.” By staying in sync, they know what high-value work needs executive attention versus the work they can take care of on your behalf.
Typically duties and responsibilities of an assistant include:
- Serving as the business’s first point of contact.
- Answering emails and phone calls.
- Entering data.
- Scheduling appointments with clients.
- Being a liaison between the executive, team members, and customers.
- Speaking with contractors.
- Handling payroll.
- Managing travel arrangements.
- Keeping the calendar up-to-date.
- Informing the executive of their upcoming meetings.
- Taking notes or dictating these meetings.
- Writing reports and assisting with presentations.
Problem 2: Scaling Too Soon and Experiencing Cash Flow Issues
Solution: Get a Great Accountant
Managing a company’s accounting is a full-time job in itself, which is why it’s a role an entrepreneur shouldn’t take on. Not only does it take up a lot of a business owner’s valuable time, it also requires a high level of focus and expertise. If done incorrectly, the business has a high likelihood of failing. For instance, the Startup Genome Project report found money management problems are a leading cause of business failure. This happens when businesses try to scale too fast, too soon. The report cites spending too much money on product development, outsourcing, and customer acquisition as cash flow issues stemming from premature scaling. For this reason, having a trusted accountant on staff is crucial.
The responsibilities that an accountant takes over are:
- Collecting, tracking, and maintaining accurate financial data.
- Using accounting software like Quickbooks to organize records.
- Analyzing the business’s cash flow.
- Ensuring the company follows the legal parameters set for financial documentation.
- Estimating taxes owed by the business.
- Preparing quarterly or annual tax returns.
- Meeting with the business owner to share financial insights into the company.
- Providing counsel on how to save or invest money.
- Forecasting the company’s financial future.
- Suggesting ideas on maximizing profits and revenue.
- Establishing firm financial boundaries for growth. For example, “You cannot afford a new hire until the business makes $10,000 more per month.”
Problem 3: Spending Too Much Time Managing Company Projects
Solution: Employ a Project Manager
Finally, when hiring employees to join the team, the third key person is a project manager. Executive leaders are responsible for strategizing and creating company objectives. However, spending time managing employees and ensuring that initiatives successfully play out consumes a lot of time that could be used for growing a scalable business.
Here’s the true test of knowing whether or not you need a project manager. Think about what would happen if you took a two-week vacation and lost all contact with the company. Would everything be on fire when you got back? If you answered “yes,” you need a project manager you can trust. They’ll manage the company’s flow of work, delegate tasks, and ensure timely project completion.
Other responsibilities project managers take ownership over are:
- Guiding projects from conception to implementation.
- Creating proposals for the scope of work being done, costs, and overview of strategy.
- Estimating deadlines and mapping out the various steps needed for goal completion.
- Delegating tasks to various people who can help make the ideation phase a reality.
- Serving as the point of reference for communication about work being conducted on behalf of the company.
- Regularly checking in with contractors, employees, and clients on the status of work.
- Removing bottlenecks through effective problem solving skills.
- Adhering to the approved budget.
- Tracking, documenting, and communicating with stakeholders—progress and wins, but also areas that need improvement.
- Ensuring regular maintenance on completed projects.
More Ways to Make the Most of Every Hour
Not ready to hire new employees yet or simply want more ways to get the most out of the hours spent at work? Increase your productivity and secure your time for high-value tasks by learning the art of delegation and developing strong time management skills. Raise the value of your time and start creating more growth and freedom by checking out the two articles listed below: