Hey, I’m Jenn from Unit 25 Creative + Consulting. If you’re a fellow business owner, you know how quickly time can get away from you. Sometimes you just need another pair of hands! It can be scary to think about outsourcing, but I want to help you overcome your obstacles and see how outsourcing can benefit you and help you grow your business.
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You may be asking: “How can outsourcing help me? I’m on top of all of my business tasks, and I never feel like I don’t have enough time to do everything.” Oh, wait, that’s not you? It’s okay: it’s not me either. If you’re thinking about outsourcing, you’re probably looking for one (or more) of these three things: Time, Flexibility, and Support.
On of the biggest benefits of outsourcing is that it can free up your time. By giving someone else the tasks that take you more time than they’re worth or that you just drag your feet over, you instantly have more time. You can invest that time back into income-producing business activities, your family, skydiving, or whatever else your heart desires!
Having someone else involved in your business also gives you the flexibility to know that your business is in good hands if you take time off, as well as a support net. If you’ve struggled with trying to take time off from your business or going it alone, this aspect of outsourcing can be worth its weight in gold!
Preparing to Outsource
Okay, so you know that you want to outsource. But where in the world do you start?!
The first thing you should do is ensure that your systems and processes are in place. After all, if you don’t know HOW you do what you do, will you be able to explain it coherently to a new hire? Short answer: No.
To document your processes, start by keeping a running list of everything you do throughout a given day, or at least the aspects that you want to outsource. Start fleshing out that list by detailing what steps go into each process.
For example, if you’re documenting your Tailwind process, it might go something like this:
- Log into Tailwind* and check overall stats
- Check Tribes* for new content
- Skip or share content as appropriate
- Check other Tailwind stats
- Wrap up with Domain stats and add one domain Pin to Tribes
That’s a relatively simplified process, but you get the idea. You can always expand on your steps further in the future, but get the general gist of it down now. This will give you something to provide your new hire with when you begin the training process and will make it SO much easier on both of you!
The other thing you will want to do is create brand guidelines, especially if you’re hiring someone for social media or anything else that will need to be branded. Your brand guidelines should include your colour palette, fonts, brand voice/style, etc. This will help your new hire maintain your cohesive brand face and cut down on miscommunications about these items.
Where to Start Your Outsourcing Search
Once you have your systems/processes and brand guidelines in place, you’re ready to go! These documents should give you a solid foundation to train your new hire on. So where do you start?
First, ask for recommendations from friends and colleagues. Even if they’re in a different field than you, they may have worked with a fantastic freelancer in the past who they would love to tell you about. Word of mouth is the best marketing, and it gives you a positive review before you even speak with the person!
If no one you know has any recommendations, you can start searching online (or ask us over at Unit 25 Creative + Consulting!). Katie is also a great option for social media and virtual assistance, though I’m sure you already know that!
Regardless of where you find potential candidates, make sure that you are clear about what you’re looking for. For example, if you need someone in a certain time zone, tell them up front! There are few things more frustrating than going through the entire process with someone, deciding that they’re the perfect fit… and then realising that there’s a small detail that makes them ineligible.
Side note: Don’t go with the cheapest option just because they’re the cheapest!! I cannot stress this enough. At Unit 25, I hear from entrepreneurs who have done this and regretted it. It can not only waste your time, but it can negatively impact your business. Sometimes the cheapest option can be the best one, but not if that is their only qualification.
If you don’t feel like you can afford the right person to outsource to just yet, make sure to check out the free Outsourcing for Success Bootcamp, which will give you additional in-depth resources and tips for outsourcing on a tight or non-existent budget.
What to Look for in a Potential Outsourcing Candidate
While you’re searching for your new hire, keep an eye out for these three traits:
If a candidate isn’t organised before they work for you, chances are that they won’t be while working for you either. Ask them questions about their existing systems and processes, both for the task they will be performing for you and for their CRM (how they’ll invoice you, track their time, etc.). If they aren’t able to answer satisfactorily, they may not be the right fit.
Do they know what they’re talking about? If a social media manager can’t answer basic questions about how they create a social media plan, schedule posts, or simple things like that, then move on.
Can they show you the results they have achieved for other clients? Sometimes you may run across someone bound by confidentiality agreements with larger companies that they work with (I’ve had to deal with this myself for my team’s social media manager), but they should still be able to explain the steps they took to achieve the desired results.
Don’t forget that if you need social media or virtual assistance, Katie is your gal!If you’re looking for branding, content, marketing, or support services, I would love to chat with you about how Unit 25 Creative + Consulting’s team can achieve the results you want. And if you want to get more in-depth resources to help you overcome the obstacles of outsourcing despite a tight budget, control issues, or lack of established systems, make sure to grab the FREE 5-day Outsourcing for Success Bootcamp!
About the Author:
Jenn is the owner and project manager at Unit 25 Creative + Consulting. She and her team provide branding, content, marketing, and support services for entrepreneurs. Jenn has always been that person who sees the path others can take to turn their passions and skills into a living that they enjoy, even when she was a kid! Her goal is to empower her clients and other business owners to do more of what they love in business AND life by providing the support and solutions needed to grow and succeed in their goals. If you’d like to learn more or just have a virtual coffee chat, schedule a Discovery Meeting or Coffee Chat today!
I hope you enjoyed our guest blogger this week. If you have any more tips for knowing when you are ready to outsource, pop them below! If you know you need a helping hand- then get in touch and let’s see how we can help you grow your business and free up some of your time.