~by Melissa Martinez~
Have you considered asking for help, or outsourcing, for your business? Being a business owner is becoming more and more difficult nowadays due to the large amount of information you need to know and the large amount of software and Apps you need to be able to use. Gone are the days of totally DIY-ing your business. Now don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of things you can do for yourself, but sometimes you end up losing more time and money when you should have just hired someone to do it for you.
What is Outsourcing?
The word outsourcing has had many meanings over the years, but most people think of people losing their jobs to others overseas. That is not what I am suggesting today. I am suggesting that you find a person who is skilled in the area in which you need help, and let them help you. Sometimes you don’t even know you need help until you have hit a breaking point.
Why do people outsource work?
I’m a VA (virtual assistant) and OBM (Online business Manager). Most people I have worked with decide to hire a VA for one or more of these 3 reasons:
1) They do not have the time to do the task or tasks themselves. They know how to send that newsletter in MailChimp, but it takes up too much time and they know someone else can do it faster.
2) They don’t want to do it. There are just some things I don’t want to do any more. I outsource my dishes to my dishwashing machine at least 3 times a week.
3) They don’t know, and they don’t want to know, how it is done. Programs like Photoshop fit well in this category. You might need graphics for your dog walking business, but it doesn’t pay to learn to do it yourself.
Why should you outsource work?
Honestly, it simply allows you to work in your business instead of on your business. For example, you decided to open up your photography company because you love taking pictures. But if you spend most of your time doing the things that make your business run instead of being behind the camera, what’s the point? There is a better way.
What are the benefits?
The biggest question everyone has is, “What is in it for me?”. I get it! You work hard to make money, and you don’t just want to hand it over to someone else.
Here are some things to consider:
- You don’t have to own all the equipment and software when a VA does the work for you. A VA uses their own equipment from their location to do the work for you. If it is a specialty software like Photoshop, they will have that, so you don’t need to buy it. However, you will need to provide access to some of your programs. For example, if you want them to send out that newsletter, you need to provide them with your email marketing program since that is where all your info is stored anyways.
- They only work the hours that you have paid, and they are not your employees. This means no overtime or holiday pay, no insurance or retirement, and no taxes paid out on your part.
- They work from their location, so you don’t have to have a brick and mortar building to house them. No rent, utilities, etc.
- They know what they are doing and can do it well. VA’s work within a niche. I currently work with coaches or people who provide coaching services, like business or life coaches. Because of this, I know how to do the things they need. My general services can be done for anyone, but my specialty services would only benefit coaches. Nor am I capable of helping everyone. I am not the person to call when you need your taxes done. But, I do know a person!
There is so much more I can share but I will leave you with this. Think about how much you charge for your services. A typical coach charges around $197 for an hour-long 1:1 session. If it takes you 3 hours to figure out how to create the lead page that collects the emails from your opt-in offer to grow your email list. That just cost you roughly $600. If you hire a VA to do it, and it only takes them 2 hours and say they charge $40 an hour you just saved $520, and opened up three hours you could be working with those clients who pay you the big bucks. Outsourcing is just good business.
Meet the Author: Melissa Martinez
Melissa Martinez is the Owner of Northern Lights Administrative Consulting. She loves to help her clients work smarter not harder, so they can find the elusive work-life balance we all so desperately need. Find out more and read her other blog posts by checking out her website at www.northernlightsac.com or hang out with her on Facebook at www.facebook.com/northernlightsac