Take a look at your schedule this week, business owners. How much of your time is taken up with activities that don't create new products or services, drive more sales or find new customers?
If the answer is a lot, it's probably time to think about offloading some of your chores so you can concentrate on what really matters. For instance, are you cleaning counters or writing Web copy, when what you're really good at is inventing, selling or servicing customers?
Here is a list of the top 10 tasks creative solopreneurs should outsource, says Kevin Reeth, CEO and co-founder of the accounting-software firm Outright.
- Technology Setup
- Data entry
- Creative work outside your specialty
- Anything you don't enjoy
Personally, I think that No. 10 there should come first on this list. Things you don't enjoy take forever to do, naturally. So what that amounts to for you is a major time-waster.
Shopping and errands, to me, rank a close second. Rather than drive to town, hand a bank deposit to a teller and pick up the dry cleaning, your precious time is likely better spent elsewhere. Recruit a teen -- unemployment is high among our nation's youth and you won't have any trouble finding someone great.
Cleaning I have made a longstanding vow not to do -- it's really a bad idea for me, as I am allergic to both dust and cleaners. Plus I hate it, so back to that No. 10 there.
Having once been a secretary, I'm not so sure scheduling is a good one to outsource. Seems like half the time there's a miscommunication once you hand that off, and we all have those handy online calendars now that track our appointments. Think I'm keeping that one.
Bookkeeping or accounting always seem like the one where you outsource it and the next thing you know, you realize somebody's been writing themselves company checks and they've flown off to the Bahamas. Or maybe it's that I'm sort of a numbers dork, having covered business finance for a long time, so I like it. Just did my half-year close and projections for annual income for 2011 this morning...my idea of a good time. If you outsource this one, I say make sure you keep a close eye on it.
What are your favorite tasks to outsource at your business? Leave a comment and let us know.