Building a team

Her Experience: Building a team

For a long time I have been shying away from getting employees because I feared that I would not be able to afford to pay them.

I had read stories of how founders recruited award winning teams in exchange for stake in the Company and the team worked for months on end before any of them could draw a salary.

On my end, I have met potential candidates who would often ask ‘how much is the pay’ . That broke my heart for a long time as I was trying to make a social enterprise sustainable and revenue was not guaranteed till months after set up.

After trying for some time, I got an admin, a trainer and the rest of the work, I handled it myself. Its not easy doing everything from product design, project management, quality control, sales and marketing and promotions. I got to a place where I was burned out. All this time, we did not have revenue but I was paying my two employees.

I needed a solution and I needed it fast.

I attended a class on building a team and one of the things we had to do was break down the tasks and write down who handles the tasks currently. Out of seven tasks, I was handling five tasks.  We then had a column for who would handle the tasks in three months and another column for nine months.

Looking at my chat, I did not want to handle all 5 tasks in the next three months or nine months. I wanted to do what I loved doing as a founder. Ensuring the company is on the right track when it comes to the vision. Ensuring the product is developed to perfection. Ensuring I am bringing in strategic partners to grow the company. I did not want to run around and do tasks that take too much of my time.

After talking to the trainer, this is what she had to say. Work backwords!

I thought long and hard. I needed to increase my output and I could only do that with additional employees.

My fear of being responsible for employees made me not even think of creating a team. I am superwoman, I can handle a lot of things but this is one area in the business that just has to be done.

All we need is four more employees who should have targets on how many items to produce in a day, a great social media campaign and two sales agents to ensure the goods produced always get  sold.

How hard was it?

Well, for me it was my fears and insecurities. I did not see the big picture that could enable me take a risk and expand my business.

Today I am proud to say that I just made calls and I am looking to build a team in the next two months!

Wish me luck!