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Benefits of Outsourcing for Small Business

To outsource or not to outsource:  that is the question.  Sadly many business owners base their decision purely on a cost basis without putting any thought into the long term costs and benefits.

Outsourcing is a valid business strategy that can save you much more than it costs.  Think about it. How long do you spend struggling with those parts of your business that you aren’t good at?  It can take you two or three times as long to do the job as it would take a professional AND they will do it better.

While you are slaving away over the time sucking jobs, you are losing out on potential sales and the chance to develop relationships with clients that are so important to your business.  By struggling to get that job done you are having a negative impact on your bottom line.

You don’t have to outsource key parts of your business.  Instead, look for the things that don’t have to be done by you personally.  Things that you might like to outsource are:

  • Routine work
  • Work that involves skills that you don’t have
  • Work that you don’t like to do
  • Anything that frees your time for more important work

Even big organisations buy in the people they need when they don’t have the expertise in-house.   In general it makes sense to outsource tasks which don’t play to your strengths.  By paying a professional to do them you will end up with quality work that supports everything you are trying to achieve in business.

But I mentioned that word – paying.  It costs money to outsource.

Yes, it will cost you money and it’s important that you don’t hire someone based on price alone.  The cheapest is not usually the best and if you are going to invest in your business then do it well.  Pay a little more to get the best you can afford.

When you start to panic about the price, ask yourself how much it could cost you if your accounts weren’t up to date.  Ask yourself how many clients you might lose through a poorly written newsletter or badly managed social media account.  How many potential sales might you lose as you sit staring at the screen waiting for the right word to pop into your head?

If you choose the right work to outsource and the right person to outsource to, it will pay for itself.

Is your inbox empty?

Mine is!

I recently watched a webinar of Gihan Perera of, called “Managing the Information Overload”. It has inspired me to become super organised when it comes to my inbox.  My ultimate goal: to keep it empty.

So far, so good!  There are a few ways I have achieved this. Here are some:

1. Rules

I have created a series of rules for regular emails so they are automatically distributed to relevant folders. I’ve done this for my regular emails, such as social media notifications.

2. Folders

All emails are stored in folders which have been carefully categorised.

3. Blogs instead of enewsletters

This is the biggest one for me. I have unsubscribed from many enewsletters and just subscribed to the feed through Google Reader. It saves clogging up my inbox and everything is there for me when I am ready for it!

4. Set times for emails

I now have set times to check emails daily, one being first thing in the morning!  I make sure my inbox is empty. Things that take less than a few minutes are dealt with then and there. Longer tasks are filed and attended to as required. It also helps me focus on the task at hand and not “what’s next?!”.

Do you have trouble managing the enormous number of emails you receive on a daily basis? Even if you take one of the steps listed above I’m sure you will regain some control!