Would you hire yourself?

Before you answer, let me answer because I asked myself that question just this morning as I found myself bouncing around from one task to the next.

My honest, honest answer: “No. Absolutely not.” Knowing what I know about me, I’d never hire me.  

The reason is that while I’m keenly aware of what I do well… of what I like to do… and what I want to do, I’m also keenly aware of what I don’t do well. That’s all the other stuff I need to do but hate to do – you know, that side of the business that includes all the little unending but absolutely necessary chores that accompany the title of entrepreneur.

I find it interesting that business owners I know will sometimes complain to me about their employees. “This employee doesn’t do this or that. Another won’t whatever. I’m having the same old problem with so-and-so.” They tell me they’d never hire that person again.

Sometimes their complaints are warranted. Realistically, I don’t think the problem is always the employee. For example (and I’ve seen this many times) a business hires an employee for a specific job based on his or her skills, aptitudes, and experience. They hire fast and don’t train sufficiently.

Then, for whatever reason, that employee is asked to jump in and save the day… to do something they weren’t hired to do, aren’t experienced at handling, or trained to do. (Well, there’s nothing wrong with jumping in. After all, they’re on a team and teams do pitch in and work together.)

So regardless of what they were originally hired to do, the employee is now doing something else. And sometimes those ancillary projects don’t turn out as well as hoped. And when that happens, the employer begins to see the employee in a diminished light.

Listening to my clients share these stories or complain about an employee, I often wonder how these business owners see themselves and if, knowing what I know about them, they’d actually hire themselves. And I wonder if they’d be as honest scoring themselves as I’ve been about scoring myself.

Well, they don’t need to confide their answers with me or anyone else.

I think just being alert to our shortcomings (if that’s really what they really are) is more than sufficient to encourage us to take action to deal with those pesky little things that torment and haunt us and that aren’t getting done.

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One Response to Would you hire yourself?

  1. Gil Effron says:

    Will —

    Gil, your self honesty is admirable. It’s a good reminder of how to see ourselves and evaluate ourselves. As entrepreneurs, we need to take a critical eye to our own work habits while also treating all employees, including ourselves, with gentleness and encouragement.

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