Signpost-bothThis is the first in a series of articles for growing businesses about Building Your Team, which will look at a range of issues around finding and developing the best people to help you create a powerful and successful business.

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What might stop you hiring

As your business grows you will need to have other people working with and for you at some point; you cannot do it all yourself forever. Exactly when is the right time will depend on a number of factors, including your aspirations for the business, your success in winning clients, and your need for specialist knowledge and administrative support.

You may decide that you need other people right from the start, or you may want to run for longer on your own. Either way is fine, but be very careful not to get caught in the trap that so many small business owners fall into, that you can’t afford to bring other people on board.

This belief will permanently limit your capacity for success, and is one the most significant contributors to the failure of new and small businesses across all fields. It arises from an attitude of scarcity, which has its roots in a whole bunch of concerns and beliefs. For example, you might be concerned that you may not get enough work, or believe that, although you have plenty of work right now, it might not continue, or simply that you don’t have sufficient cash flow to pay other people.

But, for your business to be successful and grow you must develop the attitude that YOU CANNOT AFFORD NOT TO EMPLOY OTHERS.

And the starting point of developing that attitude is becoming consciously aware of the limiting concerns and beliefs that you have. Everybody has limiting concerns and beliefs, in all sorts of areas, and the key to not being limited by them is to identify them and then choose to not allow them to limit you.

Below is an exercise to help you do this. Before you start though, I want to explain why this exercise is very important and how it can have positive repercussions across your whole business.

As you start to employ people, whether full or part time, on the payroll or as contractors, they will become part of the engine that drives your business. For some of your clients, they will be the only or main contact point. They will be people that you need to interact with on a daily basis. Over time they will cost you hundreds of thousands of pounds. (And depending on how fast or how big your business grows, hiring people could become your No 1 Job, as claimed by Richard Branson!)

You need to make sure that you GET THE BEST PEOPLE YOU POSSIBLY CAN.

And your limiting concerns and beliefs can stop you doing that. They can lead you into not employing people at all; delaying decisions; choosing cheap rather than best; missing important opportunities and great people; and holding back in a myriad of other ways.

So identifying your limiting concerns and beliefs and finding ways to minimise their impact is critical if you want to build a truly successful business.

How to identify limiting beliefs

So let’s quickly identify your limiting concerns and beliefs about employing people. Ask yourself: “What are the concerns, worries or fears that I have about what could go wrong when I employ somebody?”

Make sure you actually write down your answers, don’t just hold them in your head. Keep them simple, just a single phrase or sentence for each one.

If you find yourself wanting to write more – a paragraph, or even a page or two – that’s completely fine, go ahead and do that on a separate sheet of paper. And when you’ve written it, read through it and extract the key concerns from it, bringing each one down to a single phrase or sentence, and then add them to your list.

I’d suggest you try to come up with ten items. You may have more – if you do, continue your list until you’ve got them all captured. Or you may have a couple less, but don’t fool yourself that you only have one or two – you don’t. You should keep going with this exercise until you’ve identified at least seven or eight because you may well find that the later ones are actually more limiting for you than the first few that come easily to mind. If you’re struggling to get past two or three you could try working with a partner who can ask you the question, and encourage you to keep digging and find more answers.

Whatever you do,  DON'T IGNORE THIS EXERCISE!

Some of the answers you come up with will be equally, or perhaps even more relevant to other areas of your business.

Now that you've got your list, what do you do with it to stop them limiting you?

The simple answer is to just make the choice that they won’t. After all, they are just thoughts.

Taking the next steps

Making that decision and sticking with it is easier said than done. So here’s an approach to help you.

Take a look at the first item on your list. Let’s say that it’s “I’m worried that in 6 months I won’t have enough work to be able to pay them.”

Give some thought to some actions you could take that would mitigate your concern or ensure it will not become a reality.  Continuing with the example, you might come up with “Get a marketing plan in place now to ensure that we have a constant flow of new business.” Or, from a different angle, “Find someone I can employ on a consultant basis so that I only have to pay them when I have work for them.” Also, you might want to work on strengthening your trust in people.

You’ll probably find that you can come up with several mitigating actions for each concern. Write them all down.

And now, the important bit: TAKE ACTION ON EVERY CONCERN!

If you take just one action, you’ll be well ahead of most of your competition in terms of ensuring the success of your enterprise. If you take one action for every concern, and perhaps two or three on the key ones, you will be so far ahead of your competitors that your ongoing success will be virtually guaranteed.

If you’d like to send me your list of limiting concerns and mitigating actions and get some feedback from me, then just click here to send me an email.

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