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September 27, 2018

How To Hire Your First Assistant

You made it! Well, sort of. You have created a successful business. You’re a tornado of creativity and action that has driven your business to a point of success. You want to take it to the next level but you are tapped out. You mastered creating a product the market wants. Your customer service and client relations are on point. Your packaging is swoon-worthy and your shipping is always on-time. You learned how to create a stunning website and figured out how to game Google with your SEO skills. You are a proverbial jack of all trades. Whether due to financial constraints or necessity you conquered every obstacle that lay in your way to success. But now you find that you’re out of time, not in a tragic way, but literally no more hours in the day. You didn’t start this process to pack boxes, stand in post office lines, square off with suppliers, or optimize your website. You need help! It is time to hire an assistant.

I know what you’re thinking. No one in my network has an assistant. The idea is shrouded in the stigma of wasted time and money. I get it. I’ve felt the same way. I could not fathom the thought of parting with my hard earned money to manage tasks that I can perform. It is time to dump that old world thinking and embrace the change. Your time is more valuable than the money you will need to pay an assistant. You are the most valuable asset to your business and your focus should be on creating value. An assistant means more time to be creative, think up new strategies, and grow your business.

List what you love and everything else goes

What parts of the job drive value? List out your strengths. What makes the business unique to you – the tasks only you can perform? List out your weaknesses or what you don’t love to do; if you aren’t organized, or don’t like doing repetitive tasks, write it down. It doesn’t have to be a list of things you can’t do, but tasks that an assistant could complete with minimal oversight.

Write the job post outlining your weaknesses

Don’t know your weaknesses? Take the Myers Briggs Type indicator or any other personality test to find out. Big companies use these tools to vet new employees, why wouldn’t you? Once you know, your job description will essentially write itself. Organization is not your strong suit? You should be “Looking for an extremely organized person. Someone who enjoys building systems for repetitive tasks.” You want to hire someone you can work with, but you really need to focus on hiring someone who balances out your skills.

Narrow down your options and find the right fit

Target your job listing. Shot gunning the post on the Internet rarely attracts the ideal candidates and usually creates a deluge of applicants to wade through. Don’t rush the process. You have performed your due diligence and are looking for specific skills and personality traits. This is not a time to settle. Use your network and social media presence to target individuals that fit your profile. You are more likely to find a good fit if you share the opportunity with people who already follow you + your brand.

Once you have narrowed down your potential hires, interview them. Get a feel for who they are, what makes them tick and determine if your personalities will mesh. Don’t forget: you need to find someone whose strengths are your weaknesses – that is the most important part. Don’t worry if the process takes time, you’ll find someone perfect for you and your business and you’ll thank me later (I look forward to hearing from your assistant). Now use your well-earned time to be creative, think up new strategies, and grow your business.

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