(First Published at http://amywalkerconsulting.com/blog/ on April 27, 2015)
Want to know what almost stopped me from starting my company?
I am not a fan of the solo-preneur business model. Gasp!!! Did I just say that? To thousands of small business owners? Many of whom are solo-preneurs?
Absolutely! There is one major flaw in the solo-preneur model and it’s YOU! Your time and availability limits your income potential. Your knowledge and skill set limits your income potential. Your mental and emotional capacity limits your income potential. Your scarcity thinking limits your income potential. YOU limit your income potential. Not because you are a flawed human being, but because you are a human being. You are not perfect. You get overwhelmed. You run out of time. And you have strengths in certain areas of your business while you are deficient in others.
I’m not being mean, I’m being honest. I know it because the same is true in my business, and in the hundreds of other business owners I coach.
To get past the solo-preneur hump, you have to hire! Hiring scares a lot of people. And I understand why. It is time consuming and expensive. No one you hire will do it just like you do it. No one will care as much about your business as you do. And when they mess up, it effects your business. It can be scary. In fact so scary, that I almost sabotaged my company before it even started.
2.5 years ago, I was an independent contractor working for an amazing training and personal development company. I had a great job. I had great paychecks and I loved the people I worked with. BUT, I was getting ready to have my 5th son and I knew it was time for me to have more time freedom and to stop hiding behind someone else’s brand. But I did not, under any circumstances want to run a team of people. I wanted to do it all myself. In fact, I remember consulting with a friend, who is also a genius in business, and asking, “Can I do this and really be successful if I never hire more than 3 people?” His answer was “Sure, why not!”
He lied. We’ve talked about it since and he lied on purpose. Thank Heavens he did or I might never have started my company. He knew I was limiting myself and my companies potential.
I really believe that to get beyond 6 figures you have to hire help. In fact for some businesses, you will have to hire help to even get to 6 figures.
Here are some questions to ask yourself to help you see if you need help now, and where you need it!
- Is my time maxed out? If your time is maxed out, you don’t have room to increase your income.
- Could I handle the workload if I doubled my income this month? If the answer is no, you will not be able to hit those types of numbers. Even if you got there, you would not be able to maintain those clients.
- What areas of my business are not getting done because I either don’t know how to do it, or don’t have time to do it? Notice I did not ask what is not getting done because you are scared of it or avoiding it. If that is your reason, I say get over it and just do it! But if you really don’t know how or don’t have time, you need help in those areas.
- If you could free up 10 hours a week for more income producing activities, how much more income could you bring in? If that number is more than you would pay someone to take 10 hours off of your plate, it makes sense to hire.
I’ve definitely had challenges in working with my team. But the challenges are small compared to the rewards. If I was trying to do everything myself, I think I would have maxed out at $50,000-75,000 a year. I have 5 kids. My time is limited, and if I had stayed a solo-preneur, I guarantee my vision for the company would have remained limited. My team is what inspired me to see my company on a bigger scale. My team is what helped me to hit 6 figures my first year. My team is what drove my sales to an over 400% increase our second year in business. My team is what makes it so I never give up, even on the hard days. And my team is who supports me and makes me feel like I am never alone in this journey.
Are you ready to retire the many hats you wear in business and start hiring?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Amy Walker is an International Executive Business Coach and CEO/Founder of Amy Walker Consulting. As a Featured Professional Speaker she has shared the stage with some of the top names in the industry including Willie Jolley and Delatorro L. McNeal II. Amy is a Master of Sales and has written sales scripts for billion dollar companies and organizations. She has been regularly featured on television, radio, and print. Amy is passionate about Women in Business, Making Businesses Thrive, and Balancing Business and Family. She is the happily married mother of 5 boys.
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If we knew the challenges awaiting us around the bend . . . would we continue on our journey? Perhaps not! Thanks for sharing with us, Amy! I personally have experience the trauma or starting a business, and the many twists and turns along the way. I cried a lot along the way . . . AND . . . I wouldn’t have missed it for anything!