No Pain No Gain
Although the slogan "No Pain, No Gain" is usually applied to a fitness routine, the same holds true for building a business. From the very first moment we start our business, we are busy thinking about growing it: more employees, more customers, more income. This past year has been a year of exceptional growth for my company, and although it is just what I have been striving for, it has come with challenges.
One of the challenges was the need to hire new staff. I knew it would be a challenge to find the right fit. Up until now it had only been my husband and me. From writing the ad to screening applications to holding interviews and making a choice of who to hire, it was all new to me. I knew to ask for someone who would be flexible enough to work around our hours (and learned the hard way that flexible to me was not the same as flexible to someone else...that one only lasted a few weeks). I didn't know to ask about intiative and someone who is a self-starter. I assumed a few too many things and learned I had to be much more specific about what I was looking for.
Hiring new staff to be there to work with you is only on consideration. What about when you go on vacation? Leaving your staff behind to "hold down the fort" while you are away takes a certain level of "letting go" that can be challenging. Training your staff well and having procedures written down and stored somewhere accessible to all is key to ensuring your staff can work more independently.
One of the things that did allow us to take a vacation and still get work done was using a Cloud Based software application (QuickBooks Online). A recent example of how the cloud worked in our favour was when I received an email from a client while on vacation at the beach. I called right back, gained his account and invoiced him right on the spot! This was a client who may have been lost had I been using a system that was not as accessible from a distance.
There are challenges when growing a business sure; but there are joys too. Of course, the increased revenue is nice, but so is the opportunity to meet many new people. I see the growth of the business and the challenges that come with it as an indication that I am on the right path, and that feels great!