One of the things that I often like to talk about with my coaching clients is the importance of growing a team before you’re ready (go ahead and hire now!). This is a question I get asked about all the time. I don’t care if you’re just starting out or if you have a highly established six-figure business, my answer is always to grow your team before you’re ready. This is so important because you never know when that tipping point is going to happen and when your business is really going to take off.
So even before you start growing a team, start treating your business like you’re ready to hire your first team member tomorrow. What I tell a lot of the people that I consult with and that I coach with is to make sure that you start building foundations in your business, make sure you’re documenting your own systems, so that you can delegate when the time comes. It might even be tomorrow!
Prepare for Future Team Members
You can never know for sure, but you don’t want to be scrambling. Make sure you’re documenting your own systems so you can delegate when the time comes. You may be thinking, no way, Melissa, I am NOT ready to hire a team member. I still challenge you to start preparing, like you’re going to hire your first team member tomorrow. My business has grown incredibly, especially over the last year and really over the past six months and I could not do it without the support of my team. And so the idea of a team also goes beyond just who is working IN our business. For some of us, especially those that are working moms and having to homeschool our children because of necessity (hello, COVID-19).
So, your team might include someone who handles childcare. Maybe that is a part-time babysitter. That person is equally as important, so you can free up space, time, and energy to work on your business. If you’re not ready for that person yet financially, start planning anyway! You can totally be figuring this stuff out – what to delegate – without the actual financial investment. You want to always be thinking like the CEO of your business, always thinking about what else you can outsource. I want you to start creating structures that support onboarding a team member quickly so you can continue to scale and grow. This is really, really important.
I have a big team for myself right now, but my team keeps moving my business forward, and they’re also integral to ensure I show up as my best self and really put all of my energy into my coaching or to consulting with my clients. That’s because, let’s face it, a lot of things happen behind the scenes. Did everything go perfectly? No, but I was a lot more prepared than others because I took my own advice: I started creating SOPs, creating systems, having a project management tool even when I was solo to make sure things were getting structured.
It may have been a messy process at the beginning, but it was still a process – and that’s easy to tweak and enhance.
As you document processes, it may seem daunting to identify and document ALL the steps. So, start small. Start with a loom video. Get it recorded, even if it’s a bare-bones version. It’s SOMETHING in forward motion. You can clean up the foundations, the basics, by starting small with a central place for your documents (and all those loom videos)!
Each and every time you self-audit a particular facet of your business, you’ll find that you follow the same process most of the time. That means, if you write down the process, it’s consistent and simultaneously transferable to your team whenever they take it on. Where and when you are proactive, you’re letting yourself really be the CEO of your own business. You’re owning that role.
Finding Your Zone of Genius
Some enlightenment will come out of this too. With assessment and checking in with yourself, you’re able to determine what creates excitement for you and what’s in your zone of genius. You’ll be asking yourself, Do I want more of this? What category does this go in? Should I delegate this to my team?
When you challenge yourself to start creating systems in your business, you’re going to be more than ready when the time comes for that first team member. And those of you who already have a plan for a team, I’d love to hear it. Tell me how you’re meeting that goal. Even if it’s a nanny for your child.
Now, you may not know your zone of genius yet, and that’s okay. But at least putting yourself in the CEO mindset – giving that energy and attention – will help you find that zone of genius.
Sidenote: let’s talk about someone executing within their zone of genius. Jana Osofsky! She’s someone who has the right systems in place, and I had a fantastic VIP experience with her. You can tell that her delivery was tied all together, making me feel like my Pinterest growth strategy was her only concern. That was rare and really appreciated; I loved that experience. When working with her, I could tell that she’s really created systems in her business that ensure a seamless process with her clients.
I’m Able to Overdeliver
I like to make sure I’m always looking for ways to overdeliver. Where can I add that just-a-little-bit-more of that wow factor? It’s the little things sometimes – a personalized Loom video, providing materials that can be absorbed by both visual and auditory learners, etc. That capability I have to overdeliver is because I’m not stressing myself out, trying to be a one-woman show for the backend of my business. I can overdeliver my services because I have a team supporting me. I’m able to grow and scale my business because of them. I’m able to stay in my zone of genius!
If you couldn’t tell, I love this topic. For some, hiring team members might be a goal to meet in the next six months, maybe it’s a year goal, or maybe it’s next month! I’d love to hear your plan for hiring a team member. Feel free to sound off in the comments on what your plan looks like.
I know, this takes time. And it’s intimidating. But think of it this way: it’s easy to do with everyone else’s business, right? Make sure you’re showing up with that same mindset for your own business. And you’re not going to get it overnight. You don’t get overnight change in your clients’ businesses, so don’t expect that of your own. But, make sure you’re taking the appropriate steps to get there. Show up with that same mindset for your own business. Carve out that space.