For entrepreneurs, one of the first struggles when it comes to starting the business is hiring people. It can truly become a block towards reaching success due to a lot of factors, from financial to interpersonal issues. Luckily, Nathan Hirsch helps with that. Founder of FreeeUp, he is an expert in remote hiring. Introducing us to this, he shares the amazing help and benefits that come from having people back you from all across the borders. He also takes us in into some of the reasons why people become hesitant to find people from overseas. Comforting those who are in doubt, he answers some of the most asked questions while giving his own advice on handling these struggles.
Listen to the podcast here:
Nathan Hirsch: Why Remote Hiring Is The Solution
I have a special guest with me and his name is Nathan Hirsch. He is the true serial entrepreneur and he is an expert in remote hiring and eCommerce. Nathan is the Founder and CEO of FreeeUp.com and the Co-Founder and COO of Portlight. He lives in Orlando, Florida. He’s been selling online for over seven years. He’s sold well over $20 million worth of products through his eCommerce business. I decided that with so many of you asking about remote freelancers, he would be phenomenal to have on the show. I’m honored to have him. He’s been on many leading podcasts like Entrepreneur on Fire, Eventual Millionaire and many more. Nathan, welcome.
Terri, thank you so much for having.
What drew and pulled you in to say, “I want to be in the business of helping people get remote help?”
When I started my first company, I was twenty years old in college trying to make some extra beer money on the side. I ended up growing this multimillion-dollar business I was running out of my college dorm room. I was hiring people before I could legally drink, making every possible mistake imaginable. I was fortunate enough to make some good hires that worked out. My business partner, Connor Gillivan, was one of my first hires. He’s been working with me for over eight years. While hiring was okay in college and not as important, when I made this my full-time job and I graduated, HR consumed so much of my time. From going through applicants to multiple rounds of interviews, turnover and it was a nightmare for me. I didn’t enjoy that part of the business.
I wanted to focus on sales and marketing, not spending two weeks to find a graphic designer. I came up with the idea of FreeeUp because I wanted the business that I wish I had when I was spending all that time on HR. The concept of instead of going to job boards, posting jobs, getting lots of applicants, and doing all the interviewing yourself, having someone to not only pre-vet the workers for you and make them available to you fast. That’s because time is money, but also someone to protect you on the backend and cover retraining costs if there is turnover and be hands on to help you along the process. That’s something that didn’t exist in the industry and something that I wanted to help other business owners with.
What do you see as the number one stumbling block or number one problem people have when they’re trying to find overseas people?
They don’t focus on the three main things. For me, it’s skills because you obviously want someone who’s talented at what they do. It’s attitude because you don’t want someone that’s in it for the paycheck, that’s selfish, that only cares about themselves. You want someone who’s a workaholic, that’s passionate, caring, and loves working. Communication is the biggest thing. I don’t care how talented you are, if you can’t communicate with me at a high level, it’s never going to work out. A lot of people, they’ll hire someone that’s really talented but has a terrible attitude and can’t communicate. Maybe they communicate and they’re not skilled enough to do the job at a high level or any combination, but you need all three of those to have a good hiring experience.
A lot of people are trying to do things very inexpensively. “I’ll shoot over and use any old person that I can get on Upwork,” or something like that. They don’t know that the person has the skills. They don’t even know how to manage the people. What do you say to the business owners like that? I talk to them every single day and they seem very stressed out.Cheap can be expensive. If you rush hiring and find someone just because they're the lowest price, you will spend a lot more time later on. Click To Tweet
Cheap can be expensive. If you rush hiring and you find someone just because they’re the lowest price, it can spend a lot of your time later on. I value my time at a high level. I value my clients’ time, so to me, it’s not worth it. You can find good value deals. I had people that I would consider on the cheap end that are excellent. They’re all stars, but I didn’t find them within 24 hours. They took months of me coming across them and really getting someone that I consider a high-value deal. That’s what’s cool about FreeeUp. We’re constantly recruiting. I have an HR team that do this twelve hours a day, so when we come up with those high-value deals, we make them available to our clients instantly. Whereas otherwise it might take you months to find someone that’s a good fit. They are out there, but if you go into it thinking that you can post a job on Upwork and get someone high value within 24 hours, 99% of the time that doesn’t work.
If someone is a newer entrepreneur, new business owner and they’re being a little tight with their money and they know they need some help, what do you suggest? How does someone begin that knows they need help and they’re newer and they don’t have a lot of funds?
There are two ways to go about hiring people. You can have your systems and processes in place already and hire a lower level worker who just follows your instructions and execute. That’s the way to go about saving money to free up your time and going that route. If you’re new, that route doesn’t usually work. If you don’t have your own processes, you can’t hire a lower level person and have them direct your company. It just leads to disaster. Although it might be more expensive, I recommend hiring an expert to go through your business, maybe do an audit for an hour or two, whether it’s a Facebook Ad expert or an Amazon expert or whatever business industry you’re in. It might cost you $100, but it’ll save you thousands of dollars down the line by not going down the wrong direction. If you can hire that expert to help guide you in the right path, to create any SOPs for you, standard operating procedures, come up with that system and process, then you can insert that lower level person underneath them and have a good hiring experience.
You’ve sold this tremendous amount of product. What advice do you have for people who have product and are unable to sell it?
You’ve got to be flexible. When you start a company, a lot of times it ends up being a completely different company than what you thought it would be. When I started FreeeUp, I thought it might be more on the Amazon consulting side because that’s my background. Right now, we’re not that at all. When I started selling on Amazon, I started off selling textbooks and then regular books then experimenting with every different thing you could find. I eventually was selling a lot of baby products. If you had told me when I first started the company that I would sell millions of dollars in baby products, I wouldn’t have believed you, but I adapted by seeing what worked and what didn’t work. A lot of people go in being like, “I want to sell this particular product, I’m going to build this company doing this.” They don’t leave that wiggle room to adjust to what the data and what the information is telling you. If you go in everyday and willing to work hard and willing to take information that you get towards it, you can have a lot of success. If you’re very stubborn in what you want to do, sometimes there’s no market for the product you’re trying to sell or the direction you want your business to go.
I talked to somebody on synchronistic and she was telling me about all these different products. I was listening and not one product had to do with the core of her business and she said, “I’m having trouble selling this.” There are maybe a lot of people just creating product for product’s sake. Have you seemed to run into that at all?”It’s tough to figure out how something will work out without trying a lot of different things. Click To Tweet
I talked about this in my book. The trial and error approach is so essential, especially if you’re a new entrepreneur, whether if you don’t have funding, if you’re not maybe a top expert in the market. It’s finding out what people like and what people don’t like. It’s hard to gauge without trial and error. Sometimes you have this product that’s awesome, that might work well and people don’t want it for whatever reason. Then you might find the pet rock that everyone buys and make millions of dollars that you can’t understand. I’m a big fan in the trial and error approach not only for products, but how you hire, how you make business decisions, and how you create processes. It is tough to figure out how something will work out without trying lots of different things.
I have so many people every day that are asking me, “What should I do for help? I need a virtual assistant.” They don’t know who can help them. They don’t know where to find people. I’ve had a chance to play in the FreeeUp world and highly recommend this and endorse it. What can you say to people?
We’re very easy to contact, on the website, FreeeUp.com, you can sign up as a client for free. You can book a meeting in my calendar. I’d love to talk directly with you about your business. You can join the Online Hiring Mastermind Group on Facebook where we post a lot of strategies and hints about how to hire people successfully. You can also add me on Skype, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. We’re very accessible and we also have a book, The 50 Secrets to Bootstrap Million Dollar Companies, that you can check out as well.
Thank you so much for joining me. It has been a pleasure to have you here, Nathan. I admire what you’re doing, and I know what a difference it’s making for business owners. Folks, connect in with Nathan. It will make a big difference for you.
- Nathan Hirsch on Entrepreneur on Fire
- Nathan Hirsch on Eventual Millionaire
- Connor Gillivan
- Online Hiring Mastermind Group on Facebook
- Nathan Hirsch on Facebook
- Nathan Hirsch on Twitter
- Nathan Hirsch on Instagram
- The 50 Secrets to Bootstrap Million Dollar Companies
About Nathan Hirsch
My name is Nathan Hirsch and I am the Founder and CEO of FreeeUp, a marketplace connecting business owners with the top 1% of freelancers in eCommerce, digital marketing, web development, and much more. Interested in being a client or partner? Lets talk! https://calendly.com/freeeup-nathan
I built FreeeUp to address the frustrations I had. FreeeUp receives hundreds of freelancer applicants each week to join the marketplace. We interview and vet them, take the top 1% (based on skill, attitude and communication), and make them available to our clients quickly whenever they need them. On the backend, we have 24/7 support to make sure people have a good experience. Lastly, we have a no turnover guarantee covering replacement costs if the freelancer ever quits. We have been growing rapidly since we started three years ago and work with thousands of business all over the world.
In 2006, I founded my first online venture out of my college dorm room, selling and buying student textbooks. I rapidly scaled my e-commerce business, bootstrapping from a $20 student – cause initiative to a multi-million dollar e-tailer clocking in revenues in excess of $30 million on Amazon across a 6 year period while serving over 10,000 customers.
I have never had a “real job” besides being a high-school Intern at Aaron’s Inc, a large retailer headquartered out of Atlanta, GA and later with Firestone Corporation in 2006 where I successfully handled a whole suite of critical deliverables from exceeding sales targets, leading the District Credit Card Sales process and managing critical customer touch points. The intensive Customer Service Training at Firestone inspired me to incorporate key elements into both Portlight and FreeeUp.
Honesty, integrity, ethics and superlative customer experience have always been the four professional cornerstones of my success.