How to Outsource on a Budget
How to outsource on a budget? Read on…by Adele Jackson
If there’s been a common theme to my guest posts here, it’s that you need to outsource. Trying to perform each specific task for your business works against your productivity for many reasons.
Here are just a few of those reasons:
Performing small tasks gives you less time to do more important business building activities like planning and marketing your business.
Doing the job of several people (admin assistant, bookkeeper, accountant, marketing manager and more) means it’s difficult to do any one thing well.
They aren’t employees, so you don’t have to pay salary or benefits. Plus, they work from their own home or office, so they don’t need to come to your place of work.
To decide what you should outsource, consider a few things:
What necessary tasks drag you away from business building activities? For example, answering emails and performing customer support are usually the first things that I recommend people outsource. They are important tasks, but they can be a distraction from actually growing one’s business and are skills easily found in outsourced workers. One of the best companies we’ve found to find these types of skills is oDesk.
What tasks do you really not enjoy doing? You will always be more productive in your business if you focus on the things you like to do. If you don’t like writing articles, hire a writer to write them. If you don’t like crunching numbers or doing taxes, hire an accountant or bookkeeper.
What tasks are you unable to do for your business? If you don’t know how to make graphics or do programming for your business, hire the appropriate people. Sometimes the learning curve required just results in frustration and it’s simply easier to have someone else take care of those details. Some of those harder tasks are things you may learn over time, but there’s no sense in stressing yourself out and slowing down your progress because you’re trying to do everything yourself.
If you consider your hourly worth, which tasks could you hire someone to do more cheaply? Many of us do work that greatly reduces our hourly worth in our business. If you focused only on high level tasks (like email marketing, planning and other marketing tasks), what would your hourly worth be? Probably a lot higher than it is now. If you put your hourly worth at $25, $50 or $75 per hour and you can hire someone to do tasks at a lower rate than that, you should probably hire them.
Again, there’s no need to jump in over your head and hire people to do everything you don’t like or can’t do, but you’ve got to make a small start. Just hiring an assistant to answer emails for 2 hours per week will free you up like you wouldn’t imagine.
Yes obviously, you’ll get an extra 2 hours per week – but email is a huge distraction and taking that off your to do list means you can be far more focused on everything else. Once you see the results of your first hire, begin to outsource a bit more at a time.
Keep it going and keep growing.
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