When we first start out, it is amazing to say that you’ve hired your first employee, assistant, whatever. Over time, the noise goes away and we get accustomed to things as they are.
After the recent sale of a business, I started to look at the team with a fresh set of eyes. Shame on me for not having better reporting and analytics on this, but I noticed there were people on payroll who might have been doing work, but it’s work that didn’t have to be done.
This is why I always start with, does the task need to be done as the first question?
What I’m finding is that a lot of what I thought needed to be done, doesn’t have to be done. What we could use is a totally different skillset. Instead of trying to carry both, we are going to make a change and right size the company.
I don’t recommend this daily, maybe every 4, 6 or 12 months feels like the right frequency, the faster you are growing or changing, the more frequently this should be considered.
This can be taken to an extreme, someone once remarked that his staff of 15 was amazing. I asked what his secret was and it was simple, every year he would fire the bottom 3 performers and replace them. This is top grading in action. There is always a balance between loyalty and complete focus on efficiency which has to be struck by each person and company, and maybe the best is having everyone always fighting for their job, but maybe there is a value to consistency, you and your clients need to make that decision.