10 Ways to Know When to Hire More Staff

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Running a small business is an exercise in patience, incredible organization, and good people skills. One of the hardest skills to learn as a small business owner is when to hire staff to help make your day to day business operations a little smoother. Ann Mehl is a reputable business coach who provides incredible advice and guidance for small business owners throughout the nation. She recently created a helpful video that was posted to Entrepreneur.com that discusses some tips that may help business owners know when to hire new staff.

Hiring new people is an investment for your business. You’ll be spending money from your own pocket to pay the salaries of your employees. You might also have to pay for health insurance and other employee costs. The trade-off, though, is that your business is more likely to grow successfully and steadfastly when you have a handful of high quality employees at the helm. Here are some ways to know that your business is in need of new staff members.

Too Little Time in the Day

Does it feel like you have too little time in the day? Does your work day consistently end with a pile of to-do work on your desk that never seems to dissipate throughout the day? Are you taking piles of work home with you and blurring the lines between work and home? If so, you might be in need of some new staffers. Even something as simple as hiring a receptionist to answer the phones can take a lot of work off your shoulders. If the work day seems to be getting shorter and shorter, considering hiring new faces.

Customer Service Lapses

Customer service is one of the most difficult parts of running a successful business, but it’s also one of the most important. If your business’s under-staffing issues are causing lapses in high quality customer service, it’s time to start thinking about hiring new people. Customers cannot be allowed to slip through the cracks, and yet businesses without enough employee power often experience this very problem. More workers on staff will provide more attention to every customer.

Increases in Overtime Costs

If you are paying overtime costs for overworked employees, you might actually be spending more money than if you were to simply hire a new employee to help distribute the workload more evenly. Overtime costs are expensive, and your business could be experience serious profit cuts through overtime payments.

Employees Sacrificing Vacation Time

Are your employees sacrificing their vacation time because they feel guilty about leaving you with piles of unfinished work? An employee who skips vacation may seem like a dedicated and altruistic individual, but this can breed resentment and bad feelings. Be sure that your employees feel comfortable taking their vacation. If they feel overworked, hiring a few extra hands can help.

A Run-Down Staff

Is your business plagued by employee illnesses? Are your employees calling in sick on a regular basis? High levels of stress, inefficient sleep, and strenuous work levels can contribute to increased illness. A run-down staff may be a sign that it’s time to hire some extra hands.

Working Condition Complaints

Complaints from your employees are a significant sign that there is a problem with regard to staffing. You want your employees to be happy, cared for, and appreciated. Asking them to work extra to compensate for a short-staffed situation will not accomplish this.

A Continual Business Boost

Has your business experienced a recent boost in sales or productivity? Are customer orders rolling in more quickly than you and your current staff can fill them? Many small business owners hesitate to hire new staff members to compensate for a business boost because they feel that this will “jinx” the recent turn of events. Don’t make this mistake, however. If your business has grown, it’s important to hire staff to compensate for the growth. If you don’t, you risk offering poor customer service and experiencing a sudden decline in your business’s success.

Your Focus is Divided

Evaluating your own work habits is a great way to know whether or not new staff members may be required. Do you feel that your attention is divided amongst too many business tasks? Are you trying to handle too many of your business’s various elements? Are you able to give 100% to every aspect of your business? If not, hiring additional staff may offer a solution.

You’re Spending Too Much Time on the Small Things

As a business owner, you should be free to focus on generating new clients, brainstorming new ideas and solutions for growth, and guiding your business to greater heights of achievement. If you’re stuck behind a desk all day, answering the phones, you’re not going to be able to accomplish this. Hiring some additional staff members may allow you to let go of the small things that consume so much time during a busy work day. When you have more time to focus on the big picture, your business will start growing.

Poor Business Growth

Many business owners make the mistake of waiting until they’ve experienced a business boon before hiring more employees and filling out their current staff. In actuality, hiring more staff for your small business might actually create the burst of growth that you’ve been waiting for. More employees will enable you tackle more tasks, expand your audience reach, provide higher quality service, and generate new ideas. If your business is continually slogging through the marshes of non-productivity and molasses-like growth, you might want to take a leap of faith and hire a few more employees. Consider the hiring process an investment in your business’s future.

These ten descriptions may provide insight into your business’s overall health. If your business meets any of the above criteria, it might be time to hire some new faces.

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