Help NEEDED—Immediately!


Do you find it difficult to fill your open positions, regardless of whether you are hiring for entry-level or skilled labor? Are you getting frustrated filling in to keep work flowing, and passing on opportunities simply because you don’t have the employees to meet the demand? Rest assured, you are not alone in this.

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, in 2012, there was a shortage of more than 10 million workers nationwide. This is not just a rural problem, it’s a problem across the nation.

It’s only going to get worse in coming years.  According to Businessweek, over the next 10 years, 21% of management and 24% of middle-management positions will become vacant, across all functions, industries and regions. In rural areas, we can expect the labor shortage to be even more extreme, particularly for small business owners in regions where the energy industry is booming. Time and again, business owners lament to me they cannot pay wages that compete with the oilfield. So what do you do?

First, you must acknowledge the urgency and importance of planning, networking and recruiting to fill your open positions. This must become a strategic and on-going focus in your business, with an eye toward creating a full pipeline of prospective, qualified applicants.

The importance of this is equivalent to the importance you place on business development. Do spotty business development and you get inconsistent cash flow. Do hit or miss recruitment to fill open and upcoming positions and you will continually struggle to find employees.

Second, you must come to grips with the time and effort that will be needed to adequately address this problem in your business. I recently had a business owner reach out to me due to challenges with finding and keeping employees. He told me this is an urgent and important problem, but he has very little time to devote to addressing it (because he was so busy working in the business to cover for the shortage of employees!). He wanted a “quick fix” and did not like hearing the harsh dose of reality I shared with him. It can be fixed, but it will require more than just an hour or two of attention.

As a small business owner, you must get very smart about how you plan, network and recruit to fill open positions. Kari Warberg Block, founder and CEO of Earth-Kind and the SBA's 2013 North Dakota Small Business Person of the Year, shared with me that she is always thinking ahead, asking herself, “What positions will I need to fill in the next 3 years?”

Sabrina Dr. Sabrina Schleicher recognizes that employee problems can be  one of the biggest stumbling blocks for any business owner.   With her background in psychology, and years of coaching small  business owners to extraordinary results, Dr. Schleicher knows what it takes to find, keep and get exceptional performance out of your biggest investment-your employees. Access her comprehensive video training 5 Secrets to Exceptional Employee Performance (her gift to you!) at

WANT TO REPRINT THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR EZINE, BLOG OR WEBSITE? You're welcome to, just please include the authors' bio with the reprint.

About The Author

Dr. Sabrina Starling, The Business Psychologist and international best-selling author of the How to Hire the Best series and The 4 Week Vacation™, is the founder of Tap the Potential and host of the Profit by Design podcast. At Tap the Potential, we work to free business owners from the constant demands of a growing business.

We believe work supports life, not the other way around. Clients in our Better Business, Better Life coaching program have more time for what matters most and more money in their bank account than they’ve ever had. Next, we send them off on a 4 Week Vacation™ to celebrate their hard-earned journey to take their life back!

Dr. Sabrina and her team at Tap the Potential are on a mission to change the story of entrepreneurship from one of long hours, grinding it out, to one of sustainably profitable businesses that support and enhance life. The Tap the Potential Solution™ and our Tap the Potential Family of Business Owners are disrupting small business as usual. We are on our way to making the Tap the Potential Solution™ the mainstream model for growing business.

By 2023, 150 Tap the Potential clients will have taken 4 Week Vacations. These are the trailblazers, role modeling what’s possible for entrepreneurs. In many entrepreneurial circles, it is becoming more and more common for one entrepreneur to ask another, “Have you taken a 4 Week Vacation™?” (as opposed to asking “How many employees do you have?” or “What is your annual revenue?”). Taking a fully unplugged 4 Week Vacation is rapidly becoming the recognized symbol of entrepreneurial success.

Never one to accept the status quo or back down from a challenge, Dr. Sabrina’s How to Hire the Best series grew from her desire to solve the toughest hiring challenges interfering with her clients’ growth and profitability. What sprang from her experience working with entrepreneurs in rural areas catapulted her into becoming the world’s leading expert in attracting top talent in small businesses—no matter what hiring challenges those businesses are facing—and earned Tap the Potential’s reputation as the go-to resource for entrepreneurs committed to creating Great Places to Work with thriving coaching cultures and highly engaged team members working from strengths.

As The Business Psychologist, and with her years of driving profit in small businesses, Dr. Sabrina knows what it takes to find, keep, and motivate exceptional performance out of your biggest investment—team members.