When we’re first getting started in real estate investing, we’re typically responsible for wearing multiple hats. Even if you go in with a partner, you’re probably handling the marketing, acquisitions, dispositions, bookkeeping and more. If I had to guess, I’d say none of us are both good at and enjoy doing all of the various duties within the scope of owning a business.
Think about it — people who like meeting with sellers and negotiating probably don’t like dealing with the accounting side of the business. Each task calls to different personality types.
As your business starts growing, it will eventually become time to hire your first team member. Except, who should be your first hire?
There are multiple factors involved in this decision, so let’s break them down.
1. What do you hate doing, and what aren’t you good at? Make a list of each and see who would be responsible for these tasks. What role would this be?
2. What are you able to offer for compensation, and is it sufficient for the role you want to hire? Income ranges for an office administrator versus an acquisitions manager are different. You can structure the pay to be competitive with the industry but also leave room for them to grow and earn bonuses from their starting pay. You don’t want to lose someone who is making you a ton of money because they aren’t satisfied monetarily. Your ability to work with deal-based incentives is great for this industry.
3. Would your new hire need to be local? A lot of investors utilize both virtual assistants from overseas and also those who are local. Team members from overseas can often be more affordable, but depending on the role, you might need someone who can be in the field as needed.
There isn’t a single, definitive answer on who you should hire first. Everyone’s business is different, and everyone’s needs are different.
As you start the process of finding your new hire, consider the culture you have in your business and what core values you have. Anyone you hire needs to fit with your culture and have the same core values. If they don’t, problems will arise over time.
If one of your core values is a good work ethic and your new hire believes that their hours are completely flexible and they aren’t respecting the structure you’ve provided to them, there’s going to be a problem. Core values such as loyalty, good work ethic and personal accountability are hard to do without if someone does not work with them in mind.
As you hire for areas of the business that you don’t like and aren’t good at, you’ll be able to focus more of your time on money-making tasks that you actually enjoy. While it can be hard to give away tasks that are big parts of your business, you don’t want to hold your company back because you can’t delegate to and trust your people. Provide them with specific tasks that they can eventually own, and record any tasks you want them doing so they know how you like them done, if that way is the best for the business. If you hire the right person and train them correctly, your business will thrive.
As you’ve heard before, be slow to hire and quick to fire. Hire the right person, and it will save you time and money.
As published on Forbes.com