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What’s Your Biggest Hurdle For Hiring Your First Employee?

One of the most frequent questions I get from freelancers, solopreneurs and developer-entrepreneurs is on hiring their first employees.

I’m working on an in-depth post (or series) on this topic … but before I get too involved sharing my experiences, thoughts and ideas, I’d like to get some input from you.

If you’re a freelancer, solopreneur¬†or developer-entrepreneur, please take a second to complete the form below.

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Go Where the Conversation Is

It’s taken me a while to finally realize that “the conversation” isn’t on my blog.

In fact, unless you’re like Penelope Trunk (an awesome, sharp writer with big-time exposure) and blog about going to your first day of marriage counseling (or even something remotely controversial), there’s a chance the conversation isn’t on your blog either.

Then today, maybe, it hit me …

I get more comments on my Facebook and Twitter status than this blog (or any of my blogs).

Yes, maybe I’m not doing something right.

Yes, I don’t like to stir up trouble and yes, I hate conflict and controversy (I’d prefer to teach, build relationships through my blog – it’s an extensive and expression of me and the other stuff’s not me).

Yes, I have a lot of Facebook friends (almost 800), and Twitter followers (around 2k) … a lot more than people coming to this blog.

And yes yes yes, I’m still a HUGE fan of blogging.

But the conversation isn’t here, and probably won’t ever be.

The conversation is there … not here.

(And you know what? I’m OK with that.)

That means, increasingly, I’ve been spending more and more time on my social media strategies on Twitter and Facebook.

Here’s what I’ve learned so far … and still refining …

  • Facebook is for friends and reconnecting – I’m still not comfortable with “friending” someone, which connects them to other friends (I don’t want someone thinking a stranger is OK because somehow they are connected to me)
  • Twitter is for business, marketing and reflection – for me, Twitter is often a rough draft of my thoughts, an awesome tool for customer service and for relationship building
  • My blog is still my cornerstone marketing tool – it’s still my 24/7 ever-changing resume, my primary marketing tool (on- or offline), I own the domain name real estate (I’m not leasing land owned by FB or Twitter), and so far, it’s still the best, most affordable way under the sun to get found by the search engines (when I get outranked by social media for my own domain name I might change my tune – but that’s one of their greatest opportunities actually)

What about you? What have you learned?

Wait … don’t comment here, give it a Tweet instead.


Besides fear and lonliness, one of the things that pops up quite a bit is paranoia ….

Paranoia about competition

Paranoia about employees

Paranoia about the market

Paranoia about expanding

The best ways to fight paranoia, I’ve learned, is by focusing on what you’re doing and trusting in your original vision.

Low Hanging Fruit

This has to do with priorities and focus for the business … logically, you want to pick the easiest targets (customers or products/services) and go after those first … the ones you can pluck fast and maximize your revenues.

Producing a cost versus benefit formula for this is vital … something I’m still working on.

On Mistakes

I had to accept early on, that because of my inexperience as a full-time entrepreneur in my first startup, that I would make plenty of mistakes. This hasn’t been easy when you don’t want any blemishes on your record.

But finally accepting that I would make mistakes has helped. It hasn’t taken away from my desire to be learn all I can and gather all the counsel I could. Rather it’s bolstered that.

As a rookie entrepreneur, especially in the early days, fear and self-doubt are always present. And with your first misstep or trip up and those fears and doubts are magnified.

That’s why it’s key to have a group of encouragers. But people who you can also bounce ideas off and get valid, objective feedback. People who aren’t afraid to tell you to slow down or maybe speed up.