How to Decide When It’s the Right Time to Hire

I hear this question almost every week from small business owners: “I need to add new hires to the staff, but I can’t afford to pay them until I have the cash. What should I do?

When is the right time to hire? How do I pay their salaries and benefits?”

A confused entrepreneur stares at his screen trying to decide when it is the right time to hire.It can be challenging to learn how to decide when it’s the right time to hire, but it’s also tough to grow a business without hiring. You’ve got to know when to pull the trigger and make an investment in talent to maximize your business’s success. Here’s what you need to know. 

When Is It Time to Hire Another Employee?

Although every business is different, there are a few common signs you need to hire an employee. Here’s how to tell when your small business is ready to make a hire

  1. The quality of work is suffering: When you and your team are stretched too thin, there are simply not enough resources to give each task the time and attention it deserves. As such, the quality of the work suffers, which directly affects your bottom line. You should consider hiring or outsourcing some of the work to free up more time and energy. 
  2. You have less of a work-life balance: If you or your team constantly have to work long hours to get the job done, that’s simply not sustainable in the long term. That road will lead to burnout and increased employee turnover. 
  3. Someone else could do the job better: Business owners, out of necessity, tend to become jacks-of-all-trades but masters of none. If there’s an aspect of running the company that you’re not very good at, hire a specialist who can do it better. Investment hiring will free up your time for the tasks you are better equipped to handle.  Ask yourself, what is the highest and best use of your time? 
  4. You need new skills: Sometimes, growing your business means expanding into new areas that your current team lacks experience. You should hire experts to help you navigate pristine waters, or you risk crashing and burning on a brand-new launch. 
  5. Sales and profits are stagnant: There comes the point in every business when you simply can’t grow or expand any more with the resources you currently have. In this case, it’s better to hire a new person than to risk stagnation. 

In addition to these signs, you need to hire an employee. I have always recommended that if a business owner can fill 50% of a new hire’s workweek, they should make the hire now. That is enough work to put a significant burden on your current teammates without hiring someone new. 

The idea is that the remaining 50% of their time will be used for growth and underestimated work that is frequently pushed off until another day. Consider the workload of yourself and your team, then hire someone to pick up the slack.

If your business meets any of these signs, you need to hire an employee; it’s time to take action. A business coach can help. Fill out my contact form, and let’s work through your organizational chart and future hires.

Coach Dave


Dave Schoenbeck
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