The Great Entrepreneurial Outsourcing Opportunity
As you grow your business, there are things you can be doing to produce even more value than you’re producing now–areas of focus that will translate into increased sales, growth and profit. New opportunities turn up, new ways to create value emerge, and new ways to get customers manifest. And then you realize that there’s just one problem with these new opportunities:
- Your schedule is already full and you don’t have time to pursue them
- You don’t enjoy doing these activities, or
- You just don’t have the appropriate skill sets
The only way to graduate to the next level in your business is to delegate or outsource some of the things you’re already doing or need to d. This will free up your time to actively pursue the higher-value work, and leverage your efforts up to the next level of results and rewards. If you don’t do this, you’re robbing yourself of the much better outcomes you could be achieving by doing the higher value-producing activities.
And because you’re doing work that isn’t challenging you at the highest level it’s costing you growth. You’re wasting time doing things ineffectively when you could be enjoying the priceless and rejuvenating power of a deeply relaxing and renewing experience. If you embrace this one perspective starting today, it can change the game for you in your business, and lead to you building a much more successful and profitable business.
Here are the “entrepreneurial” definitions of these relevant terms:
- Delegation: Handing off a task or responsibility to someone else.
- Outsourcing: Hiring a person or business that’s separate from your company to do a larger project or handle a longer-term responsibility (typically in a “contracting” relationship).
- Hiring (employee): Hiring a person to work for your company as an employee.
You can delegate a task or responsibility to someone outside your business (outsourcing) or you can bring someone on your team as an employee to handle it (hiring). When it comes time to delegate a task, we highly recommend starting with an outsourced company or a contractor on an hourly basis, and arrange for them to do the task for a short period of time. This gives you the experience of learning the skill of delegating without the pressure of having an employee. You can hire an experienced virtual assistant, web designer, video editor, salesperson, customer service agent, recruiter, event planner, developer–or just about anything else you need–pretty quickly with resources available to you right now.
If you hire someone as an employee, and they expect to be working a specific number of hours for your business, it’s very easy to get caught in an unexpected time-wasting process of trying to find things for them to do. Often, you’ll hire someone to work for your business and they aren’t able to do all of what you want them to do. If you make a deal with an outside contractor to do the task or project for a short period of time and things don’t work out, you just walk away. Hiring an employee that you plan to have work for you long term requires a lot more consideration, interview time, and background checking.
That said, there may come a time when you’ll want someone who knows you, who learns everything about your business, and who works with you closely to grow your business. By then, you’ll have a much better idea of what you’re looking for and a more justifiable scenario for hiring someone local full time.
Here are a few tips when hiring a contractor to work with you:
- Unless your job is project-based (like a logo or website), then decide how much time you’d like the contractor to work for you initially, and specify it in your ad or project listing.
- Specify exactly what you need them to do. The more detail the better.
- Specify what success looks like (include links, images, examples, etc.)
By specifying in advance what you think this project is going to take, you get to check the reality against your estimate and fine-tune your own ability to understand and estimate how long things take and how much work and money is required to get them done.
When hiring someone to work for you long-term (especially if it’s full-time), it is VERY important that you invest the extra time to find the best possible candidate. The best metaphor I can think of for hiring someone to work for your company long-term is marriage. If you marry someone who isn’t right for you, the extent of problems and hassle that you can experience is beyond what most people can even imagine.
The same goes for hiring the wrong person to work for your business. Here’s why: only about 20% of people who are hired actually work out in the role they were hired to do. That translates into a 4 out of 5 chance that the person you’re hiring isn’t right for the job in the long-term. Put the odds in your favor by outsourcing everything you can.