Most experts agree that small business owners should spend the bulk of their time working on their business, not in it. What exactly does this mean? It means letting others take care of the responsibilities that you are either not expert in or can do them for less money than your time is worth. It means giving up some of your responsibilities so you can work on the things in your business you are best at or will help your business innovate.
Small business owners wear many hats, but there comes a time when they need to weigh the pros and cons of performing each duty against outsourcing business functions others can do better, faster or cheaper. In its simplest form, the advantage is saving time to work on your highest priorities, while the disadvantage is paying money to have lower priorities outsourced to someone else. You need to ask yourself how much your time is worth. So when exactly should you choose to have these tasks outsourced?
The answer is ASAP.
Your business cannot thrive if you’re spending your time doing tasks that don’t grow your business or are not your expertise. Tasks that take you longer or are not up to par cost you more in the end. Depending on your expertise, there are four business areas you should start outsourcing immediately.
- Operational tasks – Few people are experts at their business as well as bookkeeping and accounting. These functions are vital, but time consuming. These needs can be easily outsourced for less than the cost of a full-time employee and will free up substantial time for you to work on more important needs.
- Website/blog design – These tasks usually require only a one-time fee, so rather than attempt them yourself, wasting time on an inferior product, pay someone else and get it done right. Letting an expert handle these needs will give you a product that stands out from the crowd in less time, allowing you to spend the time you saved on improving your business.
- Marketing – Business is the combination of innovation and marketing. Your job should be improving your business and positioning it to better contend with your competitors. Why spend time finding new clients when you can outsource this work to professionals that know how to do it better, faster and with less of your money?
- Time consuming tasks – Your time is more valuable than anyone else’s in your business. Don’t spend it on tasks like research or computer repair that you may be good at, but require much of your time or attention. Hire an expert, let them do it quickly, build a relationship and pay them what they are worth.
If you run a small business or you’re starting a new company there’s only one thing you should be focused on: sales. Everything else is secondary and should be outsourced. Outsourcing may cost money, but not outsourcing is an even bigger risk. Barter or beg if you have to, but do it. You will thank yourself later as the time you spent on improving your sales functions instead of on bookkeeping and marketing begin to pay dividends.