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The Foolproof Guide to Outsourcing, for Entrepreneurs
This era is the time when entrepreneurship is easier than ever. The increasing flow of enterprising individuals entering the entrepreneurial space has presented more challenges that are vying for attention.
One of the main challenges has been finding ways to make entrepreneurs more productive.
Decades ago, the traditional way to fix this problem was to hire employees. It is still a great solution for medium and large companies. However, most of the new entrepreneurs entering the business sectors are startups.
Most startup companies are bootstrapping or trying to run a lean business. These companies have a staff of less than half a dozen people and have likely held a prior work or personal relationship before going into business together.
Even with a team of six people, day-to-day operations can still be overwhelming for a small business to grow rapidly.
For example, startups are always trying to get mainstream publicity and often hope to get it for free. Would one person be enough to score features from several popular publications in a short period?
If not, would two people dedicated to public relations be enough? What about customer service, accounting, marketing, or raising capital? Will the company have enough time to address those areas adequately?
Such a business needs a strategy that will maximize their productivity without allocating more time to projects. With companies like AirBnB and Uber, it has been becoming more important to utilize leverage in this economy.
AirBnB owns no real estate, but they created a rental platform that allows them to leverage other people’s property. Uber is another example. They started out with a taxi platform that has enabled them to leverage other people’s time — people who desire to be taxi drivers, providing their own cars.
Moreover, leverage goes farther. All of us know that there are only 24 hours in a day. So, why are not more entrepreneurs coming to the realization that outsourcing can make them more productive?
Perhaps, some entrepreneurs are aware of the benefits of outsourcing. Although, I can only wonder what is stopping them from adding it to their business.
I would presume that the culprit is ignorance. Most people know about outsourcing, but they do not know where to start.
First, it is important for the entrepreneur to know and plan which areas of their business are better suited to be outsourced to an agency or group of freelancers.
There is no doubt that there are parts of your business that you would prefer not to do, whether it is due a lack of competency or interest.
Why spend days or weeks working on tasks that are simply frustrating for you? Would it not be better to outsource those things to someone who has a track record of delivering superb results?
Second, careful consideration should be given to determine if it would be in the best interest of the business to outsource locally, nationally, or abroad.
Many entrepreneurs may overlook this one because they feel that it is not that important. It varies from business to business.
If your business is based in the United States and looking to outsource customer support staff, it would be best to hire local, native English speakers. Otherwise, hiring an agency who have foreign English speakers may dissuade customers, due to communication problems.
Lastly, it is pertinent to consider the qualifications of potential freelancers or staffing agencies. This will be your most important step that will make or break your business.
Many startups will often try to find cheap talent to work within their budget. There is nothing wrong with being budget conscious, but it should never be at the expense of quality.
If you want to grow your business as fast as humanly possible, then you need to find a way to multiply your efforts. Some software applications like HootSuite can be helpful for managing your social media. However, software does not solve all of the problems that may inhibit the growth of a business.
Often, entrepreneurs get stuck working in their business rather than on their business. It is this very premise, which determines the speed of growth of a company.
Social media is important, but it can overwhelm you from focusing on other parts of your business.
Entrepreneurs need to return to the realization that they cannot do it all themselves.
While having a small staff can make things slightly easier, it is best to have them focus on areas that are congruent with their strengths. Anything else of importance should be outsourced to competent professionals.
In an era where competition in the entrepreneurship sphere is high, it is pertinent to maximize productivity by leverage other people’s time.
As an entrepreneur, outsourcing is your most important form of leverage. If you want to grow your business fast or even put your business on auto-pilot, nothing will be more important than outsourcing.
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