Businesses can be overwhelming sometimes, and that’s why it’s best to give it a little breathing space.
When you start a business, it’s like a new relationship. As such, you naturally want to stick by its side and be there for it every moment. But businesses, like relationships, need room to grow or they risk codependency, burnout and eventually added stress.
Sometimes to do that you have to give your business a little space. Learning to do this can, not only, set your business free but your own life as well.
Can your business run without you?
I recently took a family trip to Hawaii for a week with my husband and our toddler. While I was there my business kept running without me and we made a profit of over $10,000.
This wasn’t just a flash in the bucket sort of dream vacation week. It’s achievable for you and your business as well. Simply by learning to delegate and outsource it is achievable for your business as well.
A year ago, or even as recent as eight months ago, this would not have been feasible for my business. I would’ve been on vacation stressing out about clients and tasks that needed attention because I felt like I needed to do everything.
A lot of people start out like this because they feel they don’t have enough money to hire a team. They also believe their business needs to be solvent on its own before trying to grow. While this seems great in theory, you can’t wait to reach a certain level before outsourcing or delegating. You won’t get to the next level by yourself.
Ask yourself this: Could my business run itself if I walked away right now for a week? If the answer is no, keep reading!
How to delegate and outsource effectively
To start delegating and outsourcing—and making money while you’re away from the office—follow these four tips.
1. Structure your workflow
Every business needs structure. Start with standard operating procedures (SOPs) that can be followed no matter who’s doing the work. Tweak them once you hire freelancers or outsource certain roles. You’ll inevitably organize things a bit differently when four people are doing the work in lieu of one person.
Once you have your SOPs, you can use them to quickly train new hires. Then, when in you’re in Hawaii for a week, your business will still be run the way you desire.
2. Invest in a starter team
For every task you take on, ask yourself: “Is this a good use of my time? Can someone else do this task just as well or better?” If it’s not a good use of your time and can be done by someone else, don’t be afraid to hire an intern, freelancer or outsource to a specialist. For example, if your graphic design skills are lackluster, invest in a graphic designer.
You might very well trust in your ability to learn the tools of that trade, but it’s going to take you far more time than someone who specializes in that line of work. Ask yourself: “Can I make more money, focusing on revenue generating activities, than the expense of paying someone to do it?” If the answer is yes, hire someone.
This applies to any type of business. Don’t be afraid to implement this thinking in any situation. For stay at home moms, there can be a negative connotation associated with hiring housekeepers, a nanny or a personal assistant. We’re supposed to be able to do it all, right? Wrong!
I had to get past this guilt, but once I did I was able to own it. I realized that if I want to run a six figure business and still have quality time to spend with my children and husband, then I didn’t need to spend my time running menial errands.
3. Stay in your genius zone
When someone is in their genius zone it improves the quality of work. As the face of my company, I am the point of contact for all of my clients. I handle all of the strategy—that’s not something I can delegate. It’s the product I’m selling (my unique value proposition) so I can’t hand that off to someone else.
However, if part of the strategy requires creating a Facebook ad, then I’m going to hand that off to someone who specializes in Facebook ads. I’ll then pay a team member or subcontractor. But my business is will still grow because I’ve freed myself up to take on the next client and start building the next strategy, so it’s a mutually beneficial workflow.
4. Become a leader
Having a team means being a leader. At the end of the day, the buck stops with me. I have to provide business systems and processes that make expectations clear for my team and provide the highest level of service for our clients.
While I was in Hawaii, for example, I checked emails and messages each morning. I was there for my team if they needed me—but it took me less than five hours the entire week because I was able to delegate nearly everything.
There are times when something goes wrong. In those instances I have to step into my role as a leader and business owner, but I don’t have to be involved in every single task.
Once you have your SOPs in place and you’ve hired a team where everyone is in their own zone of genius, you’ll find that you, not only, have more time to devote to your clients, you’ll also have more time to devote to your life.
And you just might choose to spend that time in Hawaii, relaxing in the sun while making $10,000 in one week.
This article has been edited.
Emily Hirsh is a leading Facebook Ad Manager and Sales Funnel Strategist who works with entrepreneurs to grow their business and generate revenue and leads using proven sales funnels and Facebook Ads strategies that work. In addition, Emily has also begun helping other women start and grow their own businesses as VAs and OBMs through her Virtual Assistant Academy, drawing on her own personal experience. Emily runs multiple successful online businesses and is passionate about helping other entrepreneurs discover the power of running a successful business from home.