Ever find yourself looking at your shitstorm of a to-do list and thinking, “I need HELP?”
First of all, deep breath. Second of all, everything will be okay. But most importantly, it’s time to get some help, my friend. If you’ve gotten to the point of overwhelm (or better yet, if you’re not there yet but know it’s coming), it’s time to bring on the right people to help.
Before you post a generic job description or pluck someone off social media, let’s talk about how to figure out what kind of admin support your online business needs.
When It’s Time to Hire
I really hope you’re reading this before you’re up to your neck running every area of your business solo. Why? Because once you hit the “oh shit” tipping point, you’ll only be adding on to an already overflowing plate with hiring.
Hiring the right person for your business is not a quick and easy process. There’s a lot of time and energy that goes into finding the right fit. Trust me, this is not something you will want to rush.
Once you find the right kind of admin support for your business you’ll need to onboard them and get them set up with your workflow. That also takes a lot of time.
So, If you feel yourself starting to get too overwhelmed with all of your small business tasks, it’s time to start looking for help right now.
But first, let’s figure out what kind of admin support you need.
Admin Support for the Work You Dread
When you’re starting your online business, especially at the very beginning, you find yourself doing all the things. Until you’re financially able to begin hiring folks to provide you with admin support, you’ve probably got your hands in everything: bookkeeping, customer service, your inbox, technical stuff, posting to social media…. And the list goes on.
Lemme guess: You don’t enjoy all of those things. Better yet, you’re probably not amazing at all of them. You started a business to do the thing you’re GREAT at, not this shit.
When you’re ready to hire admin support, take an honest look at your plate and the things that give you a big headache. What admin tasks and functions would you be SO relieved not to have to do anymore? Is there admin work do you legit dread? Are there tasks that suck the fun out of running your biz? What aspects of running your business do you flat out hate, but you know are essential to your growth?
You can’t fire on all cylinders with your creative genius if you’re drowning in admin work. That’s why it’s a good idea to reflect on what you don’t like doing when you’re planning to hire support.
Admin Support for The Stuff You Waste Too Much Time On
Look. You might not mind stumbling around in your accounting software or crunching your Google Analytics data. You might even think it’s fun (*cough* weirdo). But if there’s an admin function that’s taking up a ton of your valuable time, it should absolutely go on the list you’re making of “admin support I need help with.”
The thing is, you didn’t start a business to work 24/7, did you? I mean, I know plenty of creative entrepreneurs who work around the clock growing their business, but that doesn’t mean you should. No way dude.
Use your working hours to WORK: Provide the shit your clients fangirl over. Not on things that, sure, are part of your business, but that aren’t your zone of genius. And when you hire someone to help you with those time-sucking administrative areas in your biz, take those extra hours for yourself. Cocktails. Netflix. Whatever floats your boat, you deserve it.
Admin Support Because… You’re No Superhero
I’m all for the “you’re capable of anything you set your mind to” vibe over here. But the reality is, we all have strengths and weaknesses. And you probably know by now where you crush it and where you don’t.
I, for example, lose all willpower when presented with sushi. I’m human, okay?
Anyway, let’s get back to that idea of working in your zone of genius, though. There are things that you kick ass at and should absolutely spend your time doing. There are also probably administrative tasks that just aren’t your jam. And that’s okay.
Naming your weaknesses doesn’t mean you’re not a badass business owner, and it doesn’t mean you’re not capable of learning how to do something and crushing it. All it means is that you take stock of your behind-the-business kryptonite, and you’re smart enough to hire the help you need.
Hiring Your Support Team
Do you need a VA? An executive assistant? Where do you start?
First of all, let’s revisit the different roles a support team fills:
- Executive Assistants/Personal Assistants: EAs and PAs are usually direct assistants to a CEO and focus on both the CEO’s personal tasks and business tasks.
- Virtual Assistants: different types of VAs are task-based employees or contractors who perform specific actions for your business. (Read on for my soapbox on VAs)
- Project Manager: This is a supervisory role responsible for managing all aspects of a single project(like a launch, rebrand, or merger).
- Online Business Manager: OBMs are not assistants. They work alongside the CEO and C-level suite to manage the entire business.
- Integrator: Very similar to an OBM, integrators are often found in a COO role. Integrators are usually FT employees in 7-8 figure companies with more access to sensitive company info.
Now that we’re clear on who does what, you need to consider where exactly you are in your business. Is it brand spankin’ new and you’re working toward affording a hire? Are you pretty well established and looking to whip things into shape?
Depending on where you are in your business, and what kind of budget you’ve got going for you, your best move could be to hire an online business manager (OBM) or integrator first.
Here’s why: Hiring and training your team takes time. And doing it right? Yea, that takes even more time. For a VA hire to be successful and make the impact you’re hoping for in your business, you need to be able to (honestly) check off each and every one of these checkpoints:
- You have SOPs in place and time to train.
- Your systems are on point.
- You have an onboarding plan.
- You’re crushing it with your task management tool.
If that’s not you, you need to hire a boss OBM or Integrator to manage the hiring process… Or else bringing on assistants is going to create more work for you. Not here for that, are we?
I’ve Got Just The Thing For You
After reading all of that, are you amped up to hire the admin support you dream about (seriously dream about, as you’re lost in that to-do list)? Do yourself a favor and grab my free Hiring Cheat Sheets. They’re your quick reference for everything you need to start making the right hires for your team. You can thank me later!