I recently flew from Seattle to Atlanta, I realized, just as we began our taxi, that it takes hundreds of support personnel to maintain a flight. I saw the woman at the check-in desk, security, pilots, luggage handlers, flight crews, air controllers, and the various staff physically on the tarmac doing whatever people do on an airport tarmac.
Just as it takes hundreds of people to make a flight a reality, it takes a small army to run a business. One thing I have learned in my short-life of business, is the undisputable fact that one person can hinder the growth of a successful business.
I constantly find myself doing ‘administrative’ things, such as following up on overdue accounts, staying up-to-date on taxes and marketing details, and balancing the bread and butter of my company. It is easy to get sidetracked on mundane tasks, it seems just as I get started on a project, the phone rings.
I have also learned that letting go of some things can give you greater control. Confused? Think about this: I spend 3+ hours a week on accounting details. I make no money from that, my money comes from designing web sites and consulting companies on their online presence. Why would I spend 3 hours NOT making money when I can make $45 an hour doing what comes naturally? The answer: because it has to be done. By spending 3 hours a week, at a “loss” of $45 an hour, I am losing $135 a week, $7020 a year.
When I hired my accountant, I ‘saved’ money. No longer am I losing $7000 a year to administrative task. Instead, I am able to pay him – a lot less than $7000 a year – to handle my account needs. This frees 3 hours a week for me to commit to my customers.
I also have someone to take care of mailings, bills, and some phone calls. I receive approximately too many “Pre-Approval for $50,000” notices every day. I needed someone to rip out and shred my personal information and toss the remaining. This alone saves me time, allowing me to focus on running my business.
Business owners are a special breed. Often we are described as stubborn, strong-willed, insane, smart, and lucky. None of those descriptors are negative – or shouldn’t be. Business owners are needed just as much as employees. This special breed often allows these words become common practice, for some of you, the thought of handing over important aspects of your company is unrealistic.
How realistic is it to hire a lawyer to paint your house? What about hiring a carpet cleaner to install your computer network? Obviously these people are not incompetent to do these things, but it is not their profession.
Sometimes the less you have to worry about will help spark your creativity. I know a local photographer what was insistent on designing her web page, while she had great creative ideas, the means was harder to come by for her. She didn’t know about search engines, or compatibility with difference browsers, or what a browser was. But she was excellent when it came to focus, lighting, and shutter speed. My point? Hire people to do what they do best.
My accountant is an accountant, he does accounting, and he does my accounting. I am not going to ask him to take my picture, design my website, or paint my house.
Let go of some aspects of your business, you can be the pilot and not have to worry about the baggage handling or staffing the check-in desk.
Jacob Madison is an internet marketing professional specializing in high-return growth and advanced marketing tactics. Find out more about him at http://www.jacobmadison.com