When your business is just getting started, it’s often just one or two people wearing multiple hats and juggling all the balls. It can definitely be a challenge to learn and implement every component of business operations while also absorbing and reacting to any unplanned “learning curves.” As much as I support the experience and hard work required to handle everything your business throws at you, eventually, you’re going to need help.
As business expands beyond the dream phase and into reality, there are five services that I always hire professionally as soon as possible, sometimes before I even believe I’m financially capable. Why? Because they save me money and help my business run the way it should, from the start.
You will need a support system beyond your drinking buddies or a podcast, though there is a place for those, as well. But business is more specialized and it is the system you build on the expert advice of five professionals your business needs to hire that will keep you out of trouble and take you to the next level.
Here are five professionals your business needs to hire with the skills your business needs to help you build, grow, capitalize, and keep going:
- Insurance Agent: This one surprises most people. Insurance has gotten a bad rep for being filled with slimy, salesy, ball-busters who are just trying to get you to buy as much coverage as humanly possible. While I’m sure this is the case for some, I have been continually impressed with the expertise and life-saving abilities of my insurance agents. When times get tough, my agent gets tougher and no small business should be without at least some General Liability Coverage. If you aren’t sure what you need, check out my article HERE (link to the insurance blog post).
- Business Banker: Gone are the days when the bank was just some place that cashed your personal checks. As a business owner, the right relationship with your banker could make all the difference in how or even how much financial assistance comes your way. Even irritating little things like bank fees can magically disappear if you and your banker are communicating properly. You need a business bank account and you need a strong relationship with your banker.
- Lawyer: Yeah, yeah…no one wants to call a lawyer, but when you need one, you NEED one. From liability waivers to NDA, independent contractor agreements to intellectual property disputes, a good business lawyer will be your best line of defense when the sh*t hits the fan. I always recommend finding a business lawyer before you need one. I’m not suggesting you put one on retainer (unless that’s in your business budget and model), but at least take an interview or two as your business starts out. You’ll want to have made the basic introductions before you actually need a specific service. Plus, you can gain some insight into their basic costs. If it’s really not in the budget, consider a service like LegalZoom.com.
- CPA/Accountant: I actually used to prepare taxes for a living, but when it comes to my personal and business taxes, currently, I hire someone. It’s not that you can’t pick-up some basic tax preparation software, but business taxes can get more and more complicated and a savvy CPA or accountant can save you literally thousands of dollars. Moreover, I prefer to meet with my CPA at least once a quarter to plan for the year so I’m not stuck paying thousands of dollars more or getting off track with my financial goals. Some accountants can also be hired to do actual bookkeeping services (or you can hire a bookkeeper), and the time you save, alone, can be worth their fee.
- Business Coach: Ok, so I might be biased here, but even I have a business coach. Coaching isn’t just for newbies or people who can’t get it together—coaches are for the uber-successful, as well. A good business coach can give you perspective, take on part of your work load, or help you wrangle the things you hate and create systems to make your work, work for you instead of against you. Bonus, they hold you accountable and can really up-level your business. In fact, research published by Fortune Magazine found that Fortune 1000 companies using executive coaching services saw a 53% increase in productivity and a 22% increase in their bottom-line profitability. I think that make a business coach worth a closer inspection.
As business owners and entrepreneurs, we want to believe we can do it all, and some of us fall beautifully into the Jacks and Jills-of-all-Trades; however, there is always a point where the risk and reward ratios skew. Just because you can do it all, doesn’t mean you have to or should. It’s ok to ask for help and when it’s time, you should call on these five professionals your business needs to hire first to help lead you into the future prosperity you were meant to achieve.
Disclaimer: This post includes affiliate links, and I will earn a commission if you purchase through these links. Please note that I’ve linked to these products purely because I recommend them and they are from companies I trust. There is no additional cost to you.