If you’re anything like me, when you first start your own business or go freelance you do everything yourself. This is particularly true when you’re operating a service based business or can make your products at home. You are your business and you can be really proud that everything you’ve achieved is down to your own efforts.
When you look at it that way, why would you even think about working with anyone else? No-one else is as invested in your business as you are. They don’t understand it the way you do. Could you even trust anyone else to look after your customers or have their best interests at heart?
Outsourcing can be a no-brainer
I know it’s hard, but try to look at it from the other end. What if you outsourced one thing? What could it do for your business? Or for you, for that matter? Believe it or not, there are people out there who can do just as good a job as you and they may even do it better! Imagine your product sales have taken off to the extent that you’ve decided to open your own shop. Are you going to call in a shop fitter or do it yourself and run the risk that the displays will collapse on your customers?
Seeking out specialist skills in those circumstances might be obvious, but there are lots of areas where you have more of a choice. Taking your own photos or writing web copy, for example.
What do you like doing?
If you’re at the stage where you’re busy with your core offering and overall business strategy, you need to look at where your time is best spent. If dealing with admin or marketing is taking you away from the things you enjoy, ask someone else to do them! That applies to your life as well as your business. I have a young family so I still have a cleaner because I want to spend the weekend with my kids instead of cleaning the house.
Your time isn’t free
Lots of small business owners fall into the trap of saying “I’ll do this because I can do it for free.” Your. Time. Isn’t. Free. You earn money by charging customers for the time it takes you to provide a service or to make something that they want to buy. If you could be seeing more customers or making more product in the time it takes you to write your blog or do your filing, you’re short changing yourself and your business, particularly if you’re spending loads of time struggling to do something you hate.
Can a freelancer do it better?
Not necessarily. I work with some great writers who don’t write for a living. They have a really natural voice that comes across very well. They simply don’t have the time to do it all themselves. I work with marketing experts who need new content ideas for a particular client and sole traders who struggle to present themselves as a brand. Sometimes it’s simply that you are so close to your products and skills that you don’t think of them as being anything special. Equally, I work with people who can explain themselves brilliantly when they talk but find that it falls flat when they try and write things down.
Have you considered outsourcing? If there’s a particular task that you’d get rid of if you could, let me know!
If I haven’t convinced you, have a read of this from the fabulous Claire Mitchell of The Girls Mean Business
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