It might seem obvious, but not everyone recognises the signs of stress that inevitably come hand in hand with running your own business, no matter how big or how small. It’s so important, for both your own health and the health of your business, to recognise when it might be time to reach out for help. Here are a few signs it’s time to start outsourcing.
You’ve stopped enjoying tasks you used to enjoy
Starting up is an exciting and all consuming time in any business owner’s life, but that excitement and resistance to stress becomes increasingly hard to maintain as your workload mounts and the real stresses of running your own business set in. If things you used to find enjoyment in no longer bring you any, then it might be a sign that you need some extra help.
You have more work than you have time
One of the reasons many of us start our own businesses is not only to create more financial freedom or to achieve a big goal, but also because we want to be able to take back control of our own schedules and time. This means (hopefully) spending more time with your family, and having more leisure time to enjoy overall. If you find yourself getting further down the line and still struggling to make time, you probably need to think about what you might be comfortable handing over or delegating to someone else, and make a plan to facilitate that.
General tasks are taking up too much of your time
General tasks can quickly become monotonous, and especially frustrating when you have 101 other things on your to-do list that need your attention. But as frustrating as they are, they create the backbone of your business and you need to get those things done. Outsourcing general tasks to a Virtual Assistant is a great way to make sure that important, weekly or daily tasks are completed, and it gives you more time and energy to start addressing the parts of your business that truly need your attention. Most experienced VA’s might even have a few suggestions on streamlining certain processes, which may boost your overall business performance. Here’s a bit of info on automating business processes and the benefits of doing so, which you might find helpful or more suitable.
It’s becoming more and more difficult to keep up with demand
This really comes down to knowing that you have enough hands to keep up with the demand of your clients. No matter the kind of business you own, whether you’re in sales or administration or client support, you have to make sure there are enough resources to meet your client’s need. If you’re juggling 20 different clients on a weekly basis – on your own – it can quickly become difficult to match the speed at which they need work produced. From there, expect backlogs and not so happy clients – and that’s definitely not what we want. Make sure to catch the signs for this one early. You may need to expand your team a bit sooner than expected!
Your employees are wearing too many hats
You might already have a small team, and that’s a great start. But having a team also means being conscious of their workloads as well as your own. If you find the team member you hired to help with your marketing is also generating your monthly client invoices, and fielding client calls, and transcribing at client meetings, etc, etc, then it might be time to rethink the structure of your team. This will inevitably streamline your processes and make everything ten times easier to manage, as well as give your team a boost.
Your budgets are getting a bit tighter
Hiring employees in house is not only time consuming, but also often proves to be a recurring expense that sometimes doesn’t feel worth it, especially after hiring the wrong kind of people. Outsourcing work to professionals can not only save you time, but also has the potential to save you a whole lot of sick pay, holiday pay, employee taxes and more. These professionals will have an area of expertise that they excel at, will be used to keeping up with client demands and because they are freelance, their livelihoods depend on their quality of work, ultimately making things a little bit easier for you. Read our blog post for more insights into cutting costs by using a Virtual Assistant.
There are many situations or issues that warrant reaching out for help, and often outsourcing is a more suitable solution than hiring full time employees. This will also give you freedom in the future should you ever want to scale down.
Remember, the earlier you spot these signs the better. Take action now, so you don’t feel overwhelmed tomorrow.
Do any of the above sound a bit like you? Our small team of professional Virtual Assistants have expertise in various areas across multiple industries and would be happy to help you create more time for yourself and your business! Book a free discovery call with us today to find out how we work, and see how we could help.