If you want to scale your business, then you need to learn how to outsource like a Queen. I’m going to share 5 simple tips to get you started.
Before we get to the tips though, we need to talk about your mindset.
When I first considered outsourcing, I thought it would cost me a fortune. I was working on a membership site for a new programme that I’d created and had done about 80% of the back end on my website, but I couldn’t figure out how to get the training modules to release to clients, and that was a problem.
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I was stubborn back then, and I told myself that I would not be beaten by my computer, and I would figure it out. I’m not amazing with technology, but I’m not too bad either, so I thought I could learn how to do it.
After two weeks of frustration, and I mean two FULL weeks, I decided to ask for help. I had a big bill in mind about how much it would cost, and when I got the bill I was gobsmacked. It took just 2 hours for my techie VA to sort out what had taken me two full weeks, and I hadn’t solved the problem.
That was a big lesson to me. Imagine how many potential clients I could have been connecting within that space of time. I wonder how much potential income I lost over that 2 weeks.
You need to shift your mindset around:
a) bringing in help – it’s okay to not be an expert at everything
b) feeling that you have to be the one that does all of the work (even if you can do it!) and
c) trusting that someone can support you, and do as good a job as you can.
Once you’ve done that, then go through these tips to figure out how best to outsource.
1. Define your strengths
What can only you do in your business?
So there are lots of things you can probably do yourself, but it might not be the best use of your time. When I think about my own business, I know that only I can do my content. I’ve worked with many copywriters now, but they don’t quite get my message across in the way that I do.
Even when I think they’ve done an amazing job, other people tell me that they know I haven’t written the sales page or whatever piece of copy it is, so it seems inauthentic. Because of that, I write my own social media content, blog posts, podcasts, articles, training, books etc.
There are many things I can do, and even love to do – like create Canva images, do the itty bitty admin jobs (Yes, I love admin. I know, I’m weird!) You have to ask yourself though whether doing these small tasks are the best use of your time. You need to focus on your ONE main thing. My one thing is content creation/writing really.
2. What are your weaknesses?
You need to understand what your weaknesses are. What are those things on your list that take you forever? I can’t do Zaps (these are from a programme called Zapier and they basically allow you to take payment, and then automatically send out the digital goods). I’ve tried, I have failed many times. I miss the last step, so I now outsource it.
When you recognise your weaknesses, you’ll find it easier to know what to outsource. You’ll also enjoy running your business way more, because you’ll be doing more of the tasks you love doing, instead of being in that frustrating place, feeling like hurling your computer out of the window.
Ask for the help. You don’t have to do it all on your own. Focus on your strengths. These are what bring you in the money!
3. Get really clear on what you need
So, I know that I might not be able to do Zaps, but having spoken to a few people, I know that they don’t take long to set up if you have the know-how. By understanding that, I know that if someone says it will take 4 hours to set one up, they’re not the person I want to hire for that particular piece of work.
It’s important to have an idea in your mind of how long a particular job should take, that way you aren’t wasting money.
The other side of this is that it saves you and your freelancer lots of time. Your freelancer isn’t constantly having to come back to you in order to understand what’s involved. Because you know what you need, you can then explain it succinctly to them, saving them time learning, and you time (and money) with unnecessary disruptions. Know what you need, or it can become costly.
Truth Bomb: If your freelancer has to ask lots of questions, you’re not making yourself clear enough.
My hubby shared a concept that sounds boring, but it’s great in practice! It’s a SOP – A Standard Operating Procedure. Simply put, it’s a list of all of the things required in a job – the step by step. What’s fabulous about SOP’s is you have all of the information saved for the job, so it’s easy to outsource. It’s also helpful if your VA (Virtual Assistant) changes career or is off sick, as you can simply share the SOP with the new person. You can even create SOPs for those infrequent jobs that you have to do. That way you don’t have to remember what you did, as it’s all documented. I just save my SOPs in Asana (Online project management programme) but I used to save them all in a Word document. Simples.
4. Time is your most valuable commodity
You know this, but you need to really know this. When you’re thinking small, you’re thinking you can do things yourself. You wouldn’t get the CEO of a corporate spending hours trying to sort his/her email campaign. He/she would give it to another department to deal with. You are the CEO of your business, so step up.
While you’re tinkering around on little projects, you could be bringing in additional income into your business. A Queen has a team of people around her to help manage her Queendom. She doesn’t do it all on her own. She knows she has to focus on the bigger things.
I got a fabulous piece of advice a few years ago – I was advised to stick a note on my computer that said, “Action Producing Money”. This really helped me to focus on doing the jobs I’m best at, instead of being stubborn. I no longer need the post-it note, but I do remind myself of this advice on a regular basis. It keeps you focused.
5. Start small
It definitely requires a mindset shift to outsource. It will feel scary, and perhaps even a little indulgent. If you want to scale your business though, you need to get support. You can’t do it all on your own.
Start by outsourcing one tiny piece of work. Check out some of the low-cost freelance websites, such as Upwork or Fiverr, and give one piece of work to someone else to do. Make the time you’re not working on that piece of work count. Maybe use the time to reach out to past clients, or potential clients, or create a new sales page. Whatever it is, take some action that produces money, or has the potential to produce money at least.
I also have a client, Emma Ward, that runs Freelance Lifestyle. Her group is full to bursting of freelancers. If you need a freelancer, you can pretty much guarantee that you’ll find one in her group. Emma is absolutely lovely, she’s super helpful. Here’s a link to check it out.
So there you have it, 5 tips to Outsource Like A Queen.
1. Define your strengths (know what only you can do)
2. Know your weaknesses
3. Get really clear on what you need
4. Know that time is your most valuable commodity – what else could you be doing?
5. Start small.
And most importantly, work on your mindset. You’re a Queen, you don’t need to do it all, even if you can! Give yourself permission to get the support you need.
PS. You don’t need to be a Queen on your own. If you want support, check out my Straighten Your Crown Sessions.