Beauty entrepreneurs and business owners usually start their businesses with two key things: a big idea or vision, and a drive to succeed. As that idea – and your business – start to take off, it can become hard to balance making it all happen, with not enough hours in the day and not enough hands on deck – or sometimes not quite the right hands. And, not all of those hats you must wear are familiar ones. When it comes to employing people, there are ways to be savvy about how you utilise your biggest resource – you – and how/when you bring other resources in.
- Be honest with yourself about your own strengths and weaknesses – and identify what your business needs: Whether it’s creative ideas, consumer insights, logistical expertise, financial acumen, brand communication, sales negotiation, or talent development – a business will often require all of these things (& more) – but you might not be the person who can deliver all of that. Don’t waste your talents & energy on something that’s just beyond your forté - know when it’s time to bring in help.
- Talk with other individuals who may have the experience you don’t have. By seeking solid advice, you might see a different strategic angle you hadn’t thought of, or be pointed in the direction of someone who can further assist you as a subject matter expert in the area you need help in.
- Address whether the knowledge gap(s) can be filled with external help, or should be an internal hire. There are many productivity tools, software packages, online resources etc. that can help you – to a point. If it’s an area critical to the growth of your business, sometimes working with an external partner or agency is the better solution and a worthwhile investment, even if as a temporary measure. Remember, your time is money, and sometimes it’s more efficient to give it to experienced hands. You can find solutions to fit your business profile, needs, and budget; explore the market. It might become a function you eventually bring in-house as your business grows, or you may decide to continue to outsource ongoing, but at least the function(s) will allow you to focus on what you do best, and be competitive in the market.
- Consider whether an internal hire needs to be full-time or part-time. Some functions, especially in early days, are critical to the business but may only be required part-time. Do your homework, talk to subject matter experts, and be realistic about the needs of the business. Again, the picture may change as the business grows, but balancing your resource allocation among must-have functions is key to both growth, and cash flow.
- Ensure you have clear job descriptions, and KPI’s (key performance indicators) for any employees you hire. Especially in early days, a business owner is very much a Jack or Jane of all trades, and will often expect their employees to be super flexible and roll with the flow together with them. Yes, flexibility is important, but so is clarity of communication. Your hired employees will have been drawn to you, your vision, and your energy as well as the challenges of the job; in return make sure you are both quite clear – and fair – in your expectations of each other, and the investments you are both making.
- Attracting – and keeping – great talent: Ensure your job titles and salary packages are in line with the marketplace, and that you are a competitive employer even if you only have one, or a handful, of employees. Understand your employees’ career aspirations and try to help them develop their skills ongoing as they grow along with you and your business. An entrepreneurial business gives employees the chance to wear many hats, to contribute to and influence business results directly, and to learn about different aspects of business – very exciting for the right candidate. As a business owner you are providing a unique opportunity vs. many large corporate roles, but at the same time you must also remember that the employee is just that: an employee, and not the owner. One of the most common reasons we hear candidates state for leaving a role – regardless of size of company – is: there was just no more foreseeable room for growth or advancement. As a business owner you can directly address that, and keep it on your radar screen as a growth pillar under “people”.
At BeautyConnections Australia, we bring substantial cosmetics & beauty industry business expertise to recruitment and talent development. We work with businesses of all sizes, and genuinely partner with our clients: in an advisory capacity, as a talent development partner, and of course in recruitment when the need & opportunity arises. Our clients – and candidates – call us out for being very different, with a very high level of personal service, trust, and integrity.
For more about our backgrounds: https://www.beauty-connections.com.au/about
To hear what our clients and candidates say about us: https://www.beauty-connections.com.au/about/testimonials
If you’d like to have a confidential chat about your growing business needs, please ring Erica Oroszlany, Managing Director, on (03) 9607 1391 or (02) 9432 7826