Every entrepreneur who goes into business for themselves does so with excitement. It’s a big deal, to begin a small business from scratch, and so the excitement of what lays ahead leaves them dreaming about what could be in the future. The problem with daydreaming about a small business start up is that when your head is in the clouds, it’s extra difficult for feet to firmly be on the ground, which is where they need to be when you start a business. A dream becoming a reality is a good thing, but the reality of that dream is often very different to what has been imagined. You may think about that corner office overlooking the city below, with a team of people working harmoniously together in sync for your business. The reality is that to get there, there are several steps you have to take to build your company and scale it where you want it to be one day.
In an ideal world, every function of a business would be exciting and easy for you to pick up. With a small business, it’s common to start out on your own and manage the processes that make you successful on your own. When you do that, you are expected to be good at everything. It would be nice to have skills that range from marketing to IT, but it’s not always possible, and that’s why we hire in staff and we delegate tasks to them. You may hate dealing with finances for your business, perhaps math confuses you - which is totally okay. There’s always someone out there that is fascinated with numbers, who finds managing accounts an easy job to do. So, you’d delegate that role to them, paying them for their expertise. This is known as outsourcing, and you can do more with outsourcing than you think.
There are three things to think about when it comes to outsourcing and delegating business tasks to a staff that you aren't paying full time:
Is procrastination the biggest thing you’re doing, instead of the task at hand? If you can’t work out how to manage your IT and business cloud, then would the choice to use a data center be the better solution for this function? This usually indicates you don't have the resources or knowledge for the task that needs doing.
Do you spend time dreading having to complete the task in the first place? Why should you do something you’re not passionate about?
Are you good at this task at all? If not, there’s nothing wrong with that, as there’s always someone out there who will be better than you to do it.
There are many business tasks that you could outsource for your company, and these six below can help you to realise that there is way more help out there to support your business than you think!
1. Business Logistics
Do you have the time to coordinate appointments, meetings, reservations and business dinners? Imagine how much free time you would have leftover if you had someone out there to do it all for you. A virtual assistant is one such individual who can be there to pick up the slack for all the little tasks that take your time but that need doing. Leaving you free to focus on the business activity that you actually enjoy taking part in.
2. Answering Calls
Again, a task that often sees you fielding cold callers and research calls, when you could be focusing on a few things that really do matter. A virtual assistant won’t really answer your calls for you, but you can still outsource the task as easily - to a virtual receptionist. There are plenty of companies out there that offer you a business address virtually and these virtual offices often come with phone answering services, acting as a gatekeeper for meaningless calls and a way for you to allow yourself time to focus on other business activities.
A business that is starting from the beginning is one that is going to need a lot of groundwork done. You need databases set up for market research and a list of customers and companies that you can contact to connect with. This is a lot of work to be done, but there is no reason that you should be the one to do it. There are services out there that can connect you to the right people who will complete the research that you need far faster than you can. Utilize them and see how you can transform your business.
You have to be a skilled designer to want to put together your own branding, logos and digital presentations. If you are, go for it, they will be amazing and it’s time well spent. However, you don’t need to be genius designer to have an impressive brand, not when there are plenty of digital design agencies out there to take up the slack for you.
As mentioned earlier, you need to make sure that your business data is secure and looked after appropriately - this is something that you can outsource pretty much straight away so that your customers can feel secure about their information being held with you from the get-go. Your budget should always include a steady and strong IT team to be maintaining your cloud services and ensuring that your website is running at all times.
You may not have the skills to ensure that your staff get paid, plus, it’s just one more thing for you to have to remember. Instead, outsourcing to this task to an outside company could be everything that you need to ensure invoices are paid, staff are paid and you have someone on hand to chase outstanding payments to your business
Outsourcing is smart: if you cannot find the time for an important business function, hand it over to someone who has the time right now. Not only will this be better for your business, but for you as an entrepreneur.