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Outsource Personal Projects
When we are self-employed, it can be tempting to tackle home projects on our own – such as painting and landscaping. However, doing it ourselves may not be the wisest use of our precious time.
As small business owners, there are five ways we spend our time when not sleeping:
o Doing paid work.
o Performing business tasks for which we are not directly paid, such as marketing, planning, bill-payment and analysis.
o Taking care of on-going needs: kid care, shopping, laundry, cooking, lawn cutting, etc.
o Tackling special projects: auto maintenance, house painting, furniture refinishing, home renovation, etc.
o Relaxing or pursuing personal interests.
The economics of outsourcing special projects was reinforced to me years ago. My husband and I were engrossed in building our consulting practice, but we needed to have some painting and small repairs done. We were perfectly capable of doing these things ourselves. However, we opted to pay someone else to do them while we focused on our long-term business objectives.
We hired a handyman to take care of these needs. Later on, he pointed out that he paid someone else to do his yard work, because it was more efficient for him to concentrate on what he does well.
“Why should I give up paying jobs to do yard work that I do not like to do, do not have time to do, and that I can pay someone else to do?,” he explained. “When I am not doing my job, or doing things to build my business, I would prefer to spend time with my family.”
Of course, the calculus can be different when the projects provide relaxation and are not time-consuming. For example, my husband enjoys yard work, and sees it as exercise. Therefore, we do not hire others unless we are making landscaping changes that require concentrated time and expertise. Likewise, I have a friend whose market research business is successful, but she enjoys upholstering furniture during her down-time.
What is on your to-do list that you could and should pay someone else to do? Eliminate some stress and provide employment for another small business owner!
Until we meet again,
The Entrepreneur’s Friend