Starting and running a brand new business can be exhilarating. I remember when I left the corporate world and launched my own business from home. It was a dream come true … until the long hours caught up with me. I was tired all of the time. I had no days off. And the primary reason I had wanted to start a business (getting more time with my baby) was starting to backfire. I was spending even less time with him.
I knew things had to change. I knew I needed to do things a bit differently. I was ready to start outsourcing. If you are a small business owner, you may be in the same boat I was in. If you are struggling to balance everything you need to do in order to reach your goals in your small business, this post is for you. Here are 5 signs it may be time for you to start outsourcing as well.
Running a business of any size takes a lot of time. There are many tasks you must do just to keep up with the bare minimum requirements. From bookkeeping to email to website updates and everything in between, sometimes you just run out of time. After all, there are only 24 hours in a day. When you can’t keep your head above the water, it may be time to start outsourcing. If you don’t, your business will suffer because you simply cannot do it all.
When you started your business, I’m certain you didn’t dream of answering emails all day or managing a calendar for 2-3 hours a day. I’m positive that you were excited to start your own business so that you could grow and develop your business into a successful startup. That is what it is all about as an entrepreneur or small business owner, right?
If you don’t eventually start outsourcing, you will get stuck in the operation side of your business. You will be doing the mundane tasks that are required in your business but don’t excite you. You won’t have any time left to focus on the strategic growth of your company or the creative work you dreamed of doing. There are so many tasks that can drain your time without moving you forward in your business. If this sounds familiar, it may be time to start outsourcing.
You don’t have to be a jack of all trades. In fact, you shouldn’t be. If your business requires a task or process that you don’t understand or have no expertise in, you have two choices:
When you start outsourcing specialized tasks, your business can grow exponentially. Because there is so much talent available online, you are able to find the best of the best to help take your business to the next level. There is no need for you to do everything in your business or become a pro in every task.
When you spend all of your time on the daily tasks required to run a business, you don’t have much time (or energy) to look forward and plan to grow your business. Because of this, you and your business become stagnant or even worse – fall behind. If you notice that your bottom line has suffered or has failed to grow month over month, you need to reevaluate your strategy. When it comes down to growth, you have to make a decision on whether to start outsourcing or accept your current position as the best it will ever be. Keeping up with current trends and continuing to market your business is difficult to do when you have no time.
Remember when you woke up each morning and couldn’t wait to get started working on your business? When you get caught up in the every day tasks and are no longer having fun, you will get burnt out as a business owner. You will no longer enjoy your business anymore. I’ve seen it happen to many entrepreneurs and small business owners. I’ve even seen them return to the corporate world just to escape the business they built. It is a sad reality that could have been avoided if they had evaluated and considered outsourcing certain tasks in their business. If you don’t enjoy your business anymore, something needs to change! Why not hand over certain tasks that you don’t enjoy or don’t have time for and spend your time doing the things that you do enjoy!
Wondering what tasks you should start outsourcing right away? There are online workers and freelancers who specialize in nearly every business task you could dream of. No matter what it is you have on your plate, there is someone you can hire to help free up your time. Here are a few of the basic tasks that you can start outsourcing right away. In no way is this list comprehensive. You should constantly be reevaluating what tasks you can outsource.
Simple data entry tasks
If you have simple tasks that you perform on a daily basis that data entry focused, you should not be spending your time there. Start outsourcing a freelancer to handle that for you and stay focused on growing your company.
Advanced Excel work
Does your business require any advanced Excel work that isn’t worth your time? Most companies have to deal with loads of data on a regular basis calling for expertise within the Excel program. If you don’t have it or you don’t have the time to work within Excel, hire a freelancer to manage your Excel projects
Copywriting is an essential aspect of educating your customer and guiding them towards an eventual purchase or sign up. Hire an experienced copywriter to bring your content to the next level so you can capture more sales and leads.
Scheduling and Organization
Organizing your calendar and scheduling appointments can take time and become mind numbing if you are worrying about 20 other things. Having an assistant can take that burden off your plate and keep your life organized.
Clearing email accounts
How much time do you spend in your email account per day? 2 hours? 4 hours? Start outsourcing to clear out simple emails from your account every morning so that you’re only dealing with the top level communications that need your attention. You’ll never imagine how much time this can free up.
Not sure if you are ready to start outsourcing? Here is some homework to help you decide for yourself. Keep a daily log over the next couple of weeks of how many hours each day you get to spend on tasks that you both enjoy, are proficient in and are focused on the growth of your company. Take a good hard look at that number and decide if it is enough to take your business where you want it to go.
Made a decision to start outsourcing? Schedule a phone call with Freeup to see how many options there are at your fingertips.
Melissa Ricker is a nuclear engineer and a professional freelance writer specializing in career growth, technical writing and online entrepreneurship. She writes a blog, Engineered Motherhood, for working mothers who need help balancing career growth and time management.
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