We've all been there.
After a long day of work and seemingly putting in a lot of effort, you do not see much advancement in your business.
"Good gosh I wish someone could reply/write/delete/organize to these emails/messages/tasks for me"
Well wait no longer! It's time to sit down and be frank with yourself. Are you maintaining or speeding up the boat?
The boat analogy, I picked it up by Sam Ovens. One of the most successful business consultants in the world.
If you are finding yourself maintaining your boat (repairs and such) rather than speeding it up, then you are spending your time poorly towards scaling your business.
It's an underestimated step in business, especially for startups and small business owners.
Understand why you want to outsource
At the end of the day, the only reason you should outsource should be because you can make more money by outsourcing than by not outsourcing.
While it may sound exciting to outsource, it doesn’t make sense unless it makes financial sense.
In the same way, outsourcing isn’t a method to do more nonessential tasks. You should only use outsourcing as a tool to drive sales and revenue.
That said, it helps to look at where you could improve in your efficiency and revenue generation through outsourcing.
The five biggest challenges facing small businesses center around employee management and profit.
They are hiring new employees, increasing profit, employee healthcare, growing revenue, and cash flow.
Any outsourcing you do should help you reach three of those goals (increasing profit, growing revenue, or increasing cash flow) while bypassing new employee hassles.
Here’s how to find out exactly what you can outsource and what you can’t.
The 80/20 Rule
The 80/20 rule states that roughly 80% of a result is caused by 20% of the effort put into it.
In this case, 80% of your time will be taken up by 20% of your activities. These are your prime candidates for outsourcing opportunities.
Consider outsourcing any activity here that meets the following criteria:
It’s not a competitive advantage: never outsource the thing that makes your company special. For example, Apple outsources manufacturing, but not the thing that it is best known for: design.
It doesn’t produce much profit or business growth: you should try to spend your time on high-value tasks while outsourcing the lower value tasks. You can tie activities to value through Harvest.
You don’t enjoy it: If you have no time, but are always working on high impact tasks, outsource the ones you find most boring.
I highly suggest sitting down and laying your day out depending on the tasks you execute and ranking them by time they take from your day.
If the top tasks are outsource-able, then outsource them! You will find immense clarity when you focus on what you do best and will help advance your business more than ever.
Solution: Organize Your Outsourcing Efforts
Step 1: Sit down in a quiet environment where you can focus. Write down every task that you are responsible for within your business.
Step 2: Reorder the list from easiest to most difficult.
Step 3: Go through each task and identify the skill set that is needed to complete each one.
Step 4: Create a list of the skill sets that you need in order to get these tasks off of your plate.
Step 5: Put in a job request and start interviewing!
I highly recommend acquiring a virtual assistant (I mean currently it's the only way to outsource work).
Virtual assistants are dedicated assistants ready to help your business depending on your various tasks, regardless of how little time the tasks itself take.
Virtual assistants usually operate at various companies so they are not worried about acquiring a specific number of hours (although there are some available full-time).
I recommend using FreeeUp. It's virtual assistant hiring platform on which you can submit a job request and where you receive quality vetted applicants.
You then set up interviews based on the virtual assistants' profiles and you take it on from there.
All payments are done to FreeeUp directly which provides that safety you may be looking for when hiring talent from around the world.
Here's my referral link (shameless plug): Freeup.net
Can You Outsource It To A Computer?
Before you go post a hiring request, there’s one last possibility to consider.
If the task that you want to outsource can be automated, you don’t need to hire anyone at all.
Zapier is an amazing tool that helps you integrate different applications together. One use I've found for it is to use it for automated Facebook posts on a group I manage.
I know I have to post twice, weekly, the same thing. Instead of scheduling posts every weekend, I created a Zap that automates my Facebook posts forever!
Hope you enjoyed this little piece.
May you enjoy the spring breeze!