How many hats do you wear in your small business? One minute you’re the CEO, next you’re the Marketing Manager, Accountant, Digital Media Strategist and possibly a Graphic Designer – all in one day.

Whilst probably out of necessity in the beginning, over time it’s simply not sustainable and will inevitably hold you back from achieving growth in your business.

So how do you decide what to outsource?

There are 3 simple questions to ask yourself when deciding what you should and shouldn’t be outsourcing.

Start by keeping a log of all the tasks you do in a day over the period of a week, the time spent completing them and its value to your business (low, medium, high or none) ie. does it impact on revenue? Then ask yourself:

  1. What can’tbe done by someone else? These are the heart and soul activities of your business.
  2. What are the simple and repetitive tasks that canbe done by someone else?
  3. Of the tasks that you decided could be done by someone else, which ones do you enjoy doing and are worth upskilling on as they are complimentary to your core skills?

At the end of a week, you’ll have a clear vision of exactly what requires your time within the business (your income producing activities), what you don’t personally need to be doing (what’s dragging you down and isn’t directly impacting your bottom line), and the complimentary skills that you can continue to educate yourself on and add value to your business.

Every day, your primary focus should be on how your business will generate more revenue. If you’re not spending a minimum of 80% of your time on income generating activities, your business will struggle to grow and increase revenues.

Revenues are consistently increased when the owner leverages his or her personal strengths through the use of other people’s unique talents and abilities. In other words, successful business owners focus on their highest income-generating activities and then build great teams around them to do all the other important activities they don’t do well.

It’s just not good business to try and do it all yourself. Start focusing your efforts away from working in the business and focus them toward working ON it.

Next steps

Now that you have a good idea about what you need to outsource, it’s time to find the right people to help you achieve your goals. It’s important to note that outsourcing for your small business should never be seen as finding someone ‘to do’ something for you. Instead, outsourcing should form part of your overall growth strategy by fulfilling roles within your business. Not task management.

If using an online community platform or social group, be prepared for a full Inbox of replies to your job posting. Relying solely on other’s feedback and star ratings, it can be a time-consuming process and a bit of a guessing game – so be warned. You can however find exactly who you’re after and manage happily ever after.

In my experience however, outsourcing should be viewed as a recruitment process and treated with as much respect – this is your business after all! Agencies in this case are a fantastic source for helping reduce the time and pressure of doing it yourself.

So be prepared. Consider the role (Virtual Assistant, Personal Assistant, Social Media Manager, Bookkeeper etc) the frequency, correct briefing and troubleshooting plans to equip them and yourself with enough to form a solid working relationship that’s both flexible and strategic.

By implementing an effective outsourcing strategy to allow your time to be better spent on income producing and core business activity, you’ll see great results in your business’s performance.