The Worksheet That Will Help You Hire the Right First Employee for Your Small Business

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LaptopToday’s question comes from a busy professional:

My business is growing, and I know I will need to hire help soon. People have suggested interns or office support – but my business relies a lot on my own skills. I have thought about partnering with or hiring someone who does essentially what I do, so I can expand based on this expertise. What skills should an individual have to complement/correct my own? I am not sure what is best. Thoughts? Thanks!

Without knowing exactly what your business is and what type of services you provide, my recommendation is to hire someone that can make your life easier.

Some ideas would be to automate, optimize, and clone some of the things you are doing. If your business truly relies a lot on your own skills, then hiring someone who does essentially what you do is problematic. It’s not only a very expensive way to “clone” yourself, but the new hire could end up walking away with your client list and starting their own business!

Instead, bring in a business solutions expert to review how you are currently running your business. They will be able to identify areas where you can streamline, automate, and create effective systems that allow you to better delegate and make smarter decisions about expanding the staff.

Sometimes, it’s just a matter of documenting your processes to reduce the level of support you need to give every employee who hops aboard, enabling you to hand off those calls to someone else. The point of hiring a new employee should ultimately be to take some work off of your plate, so that you can focus on growing your business.

I suspect there are lots of areas that you create systems around that will allow you to hand off – or delete altogether – certain tasks. Having someone come in to take a look at how you are currently running your business will uncover some things that you may not be seeing on your own.

Ready to Hire Your First Employee? Start With These Steps

  1. Write down everything — every task and every duty — that you are responsible for at this moment.
  2. Write down every task or duty that is currently falling through the cracks.
  3. Rate each item on a scale of 1-10 (1: not important, 10: critical). The ratings should reflect how important each activity is to your business’s growth.
  4. List the systems and processes that must be put in place in order for someone else (a new hire, an intern, a business partner) to do each task. Focus at first on the items that you rate “8” or higher.

Example Worksheet No. 1:
















Example Worksheet No. 2: 

Laura 2













If you take the time to outline your tasks in this way, it becomes much easier to see what type of person you should be looking for in your first hire!

For more information on everything discussed here, feel free to reach out to Laura: [email protected]

Read more in Hiring Process

Laura Lee Rose is a speaker and author. She is an expert in time and project management. Through her business coaching practice, she helps busy professionals and entrepreneurs create effective systems so that they can comfortably delegate to others, be more profitable, and have time to enjoy life, even if they don’t have time to learn new technology or train their staff.  She has a knack for turning big ideas into on-time and profitable projects.

If you are ready to transform your business from a 'business you need to support' into a 'business that supports you,' contact Laura at [email protected]