Do you feel as though you need to do everything for your business? Are you serving your customers, creating your own web site, doing your own bookkeeping, attending networking meetings, taking appointments and arranging your calendar, and making all the arrangements for special events?
A lot of small business owners find themselves in this situation – with their time, energy and attention spread thin across all aspects of running their business. It can be exhausting.
But small business budgets are tight and you wonder how you could possibly afford to have it any other way.
But here’s a lesson I’ve learned, and I’ve seen it work over and over again: You don’t have to do everything. Do what you do best, and hire other people to do the rest.
No, really. It works.
Let me explain. If you’re spreading yourself over all these different areas, you’re not giving any one of them the time and attention it deserves. Everybody starts this way, but as your business starts growing, it gets difficult to keep it all going. And chances are, you’re not actually good at all these things you’re doing.
Because it’s what I do best, let’s take creating your website as an example. You can create your own website. There are lots of ways to go about it, but no matter how you do it, it’s going to take up a lot of your time. If you are not, and do not want to be, in the business of building websites, then that’s not where you should be focusing your time. Even if you’re really good at it.
Building websites is what I, on the other hand, do best and it is my business. You might think that you don’t have the budget to hire someone to build your website for you, but here’s where that lesson I was talking about comes in. If you do hire someone else, you’ll free up valuable time, energy and attention that you can then focus on your business – on growing your business, on bringing more customers, or on making more money from the customers you already have.
I get a lot of suspicious looks from people and potential clients when I try to explain this. They think I’m just trying to sell my services and make a quick dollar. And I guess I am trying to sell my services, but for a really good reason: I love helping small businesses flourish and grow. I watch so many small business owners spend 10 or 15 hours every week struggling with their websites, trying to figure out why one feature is broken for some of their site visitors, even though it works fine for them, or trying to learn enough about CSS to make their homepage look the way they want.
And that’s where the lesson is really powerful – it’s 10 or 15 hours for you, but it’s 1 or 2 hours for me, because I already know CSS and I probably already know why that feature is broken, and exactly what has to be done to fix it. So instead of spending 10 or 15 hours feeling frustrated and often getting nowhere, you hire me for an hour or two, and then, just like magic, you have 10-15 hours to spend building your business. Maybe you take on more appointments. Maybe you attend some networking events and meet some new potential clients. Maybe you use the time to create a product that you can sell.
A lot of entrepreneurs are reluctant to give up any of the things they’re doing for their own businesses and trust someone else to take over for them. They worry about their budget and they worry about losing control. But you know what? I’ve seen a lot of businesses grow and blossom after their owners let go, hired help, and really focused on what they do best. I haven’t yet seen anyone who took these steps not grow their business.
So, the lesson is focus on what you do best, and hire other entrepreneurs to do what they do best. Everybody profits and everybody’s business grows.