In a small business every small action can have a big impact on the future. A decision that could take months to finalize in a large corporation needs to happen right now in a small business without the time to endlessly contemplate alternative options. “It’s great to have you on board, we’re sorry to see you go.”
The great part about this is that small businesses can quickly pivot, sometimes changing their whole strategy overnight as they search for the right formula to success. After all, Twitter started as a side project at a video broadcasting company. Lots of times, you just have to go with your instinct about what’s the right way forward.
Don’t go away mad, just go away
This need for quick decision making applies to staff as well. Hiring the wrong people was ranked by small business owners as one of their biggest start up mistakes. When a new hire isn’t working out, you usually know it right away. But too often, companies stick with a bad hire much longer than they should to see if “things will work themselves out”. Quick heads up, they usually don’t. This is why more and more startups are pulling the trigger and firing new hires quicker than ever. When a company is burning funds looking for their niche in the marketplace, they can’t have any dead weight holding them down.
How do I get out?
It’s not always as short-lived as Jean Ralphio’s accounting temp job on Parks & Recreation – over before he even sat down at his desk – but it’s not uncommon for new hires at startups to be let go within just weeks or months these days. Once a company gets larger, it can be much more difficult to get rid of underperformers, but there is much less impact on the organization. Small businesses just don’t have that luxury. When’s it’s not right you know it, and the sooner you make the decision, the sooner you can find a better way to allocate your time and resources.
Love at first sight
Dealing with employees, figuring out how to pay them and what talents you need, is one of the biggest challenges for a growing small business. You should start out by doing everything possible to hire someone who’s the right fit, but hiring is still as much art as science. Just because you fell in love with a candidate during the interview process doesn’t mean they’ll do what you expected once they’re actually on the job. And when they’re failing on your dime you need to act decisively. It’s not fun to let people go, but it’s even less fun to shut down your business.
Is there someone in your business who isn’t working out? Bite the bullet, communicate with them openly and honestly, and move on. It’s what’s best for everyone involved.
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