Determine If You Need an Assistant

How do you know when the time is right to hire a personal assistant? That depends on a lot of things, most notably your business volume and how much free time you would like to have.

Real estate trainer and speaker Ed Hatch, CRS®, of Ed Hatch Seminars in Greenbelt, Md., informally surveyed some top salespeople and found that the majority decided it was time to hire an assistant when they had reached 25 to 35 transaction sides in a given year.

At that point, “there’s too much transactional maintenance and personal promotion to do, so time with family falls apart,” Hatch says. Besides Hatch’s numeric guidepost, there are other ways to determine if it’s time to don a manager’s hat:

  • Calculate whether your sales volume has plateaued.
  • Determine if there are goals that you have not been able to accomplish. For instance, if you’re unable to eliminate busywork, can't possibly imagine reducing the number of hours you work, have less time to prospect than you'd like, or don't have room in your schedule to get more involved in your community, it may be time to get an assistant.
  • Keep track of all your activities for a week to determine if there are things you do that an assistant could accomplish instead.
  • Calculate what your time is worth per hour and compare it to what you might pay a personal assistant. When calculating the cost of an employee, keep in mind that you need to pay your assistant’s salary and FICA — the employer’s Social Security contribution, Medicare contribution, and federal unemployment tax. These payments can add 10 percent or more to the total salary.