Build the Right Team

A business owner needs the right team in order to execute his or her business plan effectively and efficiently. The team includes employees and advisors. Weak team members distract the business owner from the corporate vision.

Many businesses start with one employee, the owner and a dream. The owner does it all, from client service, to receptionist, to shipping department. When setting up the business this entrepreneur usually has met with an attorney and an accountant. These two individuals may be with this business owner from the incorporation of the business through the settlement of the owner’s estate.

What should the owner look for when hiring these two important advisors? First, do they come highly recommended from friends, associates or other business owners? If they do then they should make it through to step two of the selection process:do they have the skills necessary to help you and your business succeed? Do not hire a personal tax return specialist to help set up your corporate accounting records and to file your payroll, sales and corporate income taxes. You should not pay them to learn. Hire the right person for your business now and in the future. Third, do they know their limitations? Maybe your business will someday go public. Does your attorney understand the process? If he or she does not, that doesn’t knock them out of the selection process. Most business owners would pay the hourly fees a law firm specializing in securities laws would charge. Your attorney, however, should know when his or her client has outgrown his/her skill set. The attorney should make the right recommendation for a new firm at that time. A final consideration, do not hire professionals that are “yes” people. Many business owners look for advisors that will go along with what the business owner thinks. The business owner is not hiring an advisor, he is hiring an accomplice.

When looking for employees it is the same process. Hire the best you can afford. Good employees pay for themselves many times over. You do not waste time doing projects over two or three times. You do not waste time fighting state penalties because your CFO agreed with you that your company does not have nexus in California and should not file corporate or sales taxes there. You pay your employees for their expertise: listen to them.

Your advisors and employees are as important to your business as you are. Build the best team that you can afford. Do not be penny-wise but pound-foolish. Take the time to find the right people to help you execute your business vision. They will save you valuable time and resources.

There are several habits that people can adopt in reduce time wasted during their work day which will help free up time for more important things such as family, recreation and religion. This includes understanding there is limited time during the day, adopting a systems approach to their schedule and prioritizing. Overall a person must be disciplined to be successful at each of these areas and it does require practice.

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