Welcome to the Spark Show! In this episode we talked to Kimone, she is the CEO of Kimone Napier consulting, helping women business owners attract, hire and retain their dream teams to reclaim their time, scale their businesses and live their best lives. She has over eight years of experience in HR operations in engineering. She's a speaker, consultant, and strategist whose work has been groundbreaking in building strong teams and helping business owners reclaim their time. Thank you so much for being on the Spark Show.
We discussed the three things to do when you first hire, how to avoid burnout by delegating tasks, and what to do if you're ready to hire now.
“So what I would first say is that I always tell folks to hire before the growth and when I say that, I mean hire before feeling overwhelmed. So even if you're just starting out and this is your first week with your own business, set aside some time to actually think about what the future of your business will look like in the next year or two years, or five years, or even 10 years."
"Because once you look at that, from that perspective, you can start to get a sense of who it is that you do want to hire. So normally, for folks, the first hire is usually something that they absolutely hate. For most business owners, it's a lot of the admin type of things. So that hire like an executive assistant or somebody like that, or for some people, it's social media."
"I know, personally, my first hire was social media, because I was new to this world. And I was like, yeah, I need some help with this. And I'm not gonna sit here and figure it out on my own. So it all just depends, but taking the time to sit down and plan out what will look like will be super helpful. And then once you do that, you know, when you plan in advance like that, because I know what a lot of folks will ask me is, how do I actually afford to hire right?"
"So secondly, if you think about it, if you hire before, and you're starting to plan, now you're in a beautiful place because you haven't really hit all of the multiple parts yet. So if you're a new business owner, thinking like okay, in a year, I want to hire this person, and setting aside the money to hire that person, getting a sense of what this person will cost. So you can save towards that."
"Because I mean, you can do other things, I know some people will take out a loan, and all that type of stuff, if you are not risky, and you don't like making those types of risks, or investments in that sense, you can save towards your hire."
"And if you're a new business owner, just think about that, if you're not going to hire somebody, maybe until the first 12 months, you have 12 months to save up that money, so you won't feel it as much, especially because you're doing a whole bunch of other things in your business that will probably need some money for you to get that up and running too. So that's the way that I always tell folks to approach it."
"Lastly, you have to be patient with yourself and not overwhelm yourself and stress yourself out when it comes to the team because it's very new. And it does take a while for you to get adjusted to the moving parts of actually managing another person.”
"Everyone is a control freak in their business, even me, it's in some aspects. Sometimes I'm like, okay, I don't need to be doing this right now. So don't feel bad about that. So you're not the only one who feels this way. The best thing that I always tell folks is to really look at it this way, that a team is a return on investment."
"And investment could look different. So it could be a return on investment in terms of time, or it could be in terms of money. So time is priceless. We're not getting time back. So it's a really good way for you to really look at that. What would you rather be doing?"
"A lot of folks feel they can't even step away from their desk, or they feel they can't even take a vacation or a break. And that is very important in business because that'll lead to burnout and a whole other wealth of problems."
"So if you could have somebody to help you, I'm not saying that all upfront, you just have to take time to hand everything over to them. But if you want to slowly give some tasks away, you'll find that you'll feel better over time, especially if the person is probably doing it better than the way you were doing it anyways. So that's a really good way to think about that."
"Because self-care is really important. And I think especially in a small business, often folks are really not taking care of themselves. And like I’ve said before you lose sight of the reason that you started the business."
"So if you think about that, that is one of the immediate returns, you can get in hiring a new team member. And of course, and revenue too, because that's going to help you propel your business forward. Especially if it's something that's a really easy return on investment, like marketing, or something similar to that.”
“So if you feel like you're ready to hire right now, the first thing you need to do is get clear on what that next hire should be, who is it that you need to bring in? Because this is the thing, and I see this mistake with a lot of people in the online space is that they'll try to hire what they call a unicorn."
"Where you want one person to do everything. Yes, that would be dreamy for anyone. But I'm not saying there aren't unicorns out there. That is not what I'm saying. Because many folks hire somebody who wasn't a unicorn, they themselves will get burnt out. And you don't need that in your business, either."
"You want somebody to be feeling at ease in their role and their tasks. So I always tell folks to at least get a pen and paper or a Google doc or whatever it is, and start to write some of the tasks that you will want this person to take over. And then once you have that you can get clear on the responsibilities and the areas that you want them to manage."
"Because that's the thing we mess up a lot of time, especially in job descriptions, it is not really clear of the expectations set with folks from the beginning, so you'll see a lot of people will make a general post somewhere online and say, “Hey, I need a virtual assistant”."
"Well, a virtual assistant can mean so many things to so many different people. And that's another thing if you don't have a system to actually manage that, all you're going to do is get a million DMs, or a million messages on “Hey, I'm a virtual assistant, I'm interested”. And of course, that's great."
"But you really want to be reaching the right folks that you want in the position. So what are their characteristics? What are their values? Do you feel they're aligned with your business and will help propel it forward? These are a lot of the questions that you should be asking yourself when you're doing that. And once you get clarity on that, then you know who it is that you need to hire."
"And you can put that job description out there to get the applicants that you actually really need in your business. A great job description is going to pull people right in, what they'll do is that they'll read it and they'll feel as if it's almost speaking to them from just reading the job description, without even seeing your face. So that's how you'll know that it's very good. But you do need a system in place to also manage all the moving pieces for that too.”
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