If you’re thinking of hiring your first employee then you will want to check out these tips first!
Congratulations! You’ve built and established your solo practice in a successful law firm. However, now you struggle to find time to focus on the continued growth of your practice because you’re so busy performing day-to-day tasks.
You’re now at the point where your solo practice needs to evolve into a small law firm and hire your first employee. This could be a paralegal or maybe even an associate, but no matter who you hire or for what position, there are several things that you and your firm must do to prepare for the first addition to your firm.
Here are four things to recognize and prepare for prior to hiring your first employee.
What Do You Need Help With?
Take note of the tasks you are doing every day. Discover what is taking up most of your time and preventing you from working towards growing and advancing your practice.
You will likely be surprised at how much of your time is being consumed with incompetent tasks or something that could easily be passed onto a legal assistant or paralegal. Some examples of these tasks could be answering the phone, sending email confirmations or follow-ups, filing paperwork. This is what you need to get off your plate as quickly as possible.
When you release the tedious and mundane tasks that can be completed by someone you are free to focus on more productive things like marketing or casework, which will have a greater impact on the practice as a whole.
Understand The True Costs Of Adding Staff
Before you hire anyone you must ensure that your firm is consistently making a profitable before bringing others in. As soon as you begin to profit and feel the tipping point of your personal capabilities, hire someone to take over the daily tasks.
But there are other costs that come with hiring new staff on top of adding another salary to your payroll. Mainly, hiring a new staff member will cost you a lot of time. First, you have to spend time finding, vetting and interviewing candidates. Then you have to make sure you have all of your new employee onboarding and training materials reading. Plus you might have to devote extra time to them the first few weeks until they are comfortable and up to speed with how your firm works.
These are all things you have to be prepared for, otherwise, you run the risk of hiring the wrong person, or having them quit right after being hired because you were ill-prepared for them.
Don’t Overlook Customer Service.
The first employee you hire should be someone that ensures the expansion of your revenue. Determine what is going to systemize your process and make customers feel like they are being taken care of by your first employee. No matter what position you are filling with the first hire, it needs to be someone that places value in customer service. Doesn’t matter if you’re hiring an experienced lawyer or virtual assistant from another part of the world.
Teaching someone how to take care of your clients is the absolute best way to make clients feel valued and will encourage them to refer you to their peers.
Prepare yourself financially, emotionally and strategically for this next phase in your firm’s journey. Hire the right person the first time around and make sure you’re ready for them, you will thank yourself later because the first hire is always the hardest!