How to spend more time doing what you love in business
New business owners spend a lot of time working in the weeds and doing the administrative work that they truly don’t enjoy.
It’s part of bootstrapping, which is necessary for so many of us in the early years.
Eventually, you find that you have the income to support hiring team members to start taking over some of the tasks you don’t enjoy doing–or that are much better done by someone else. We’re talking about technology, copywriting, accounting, etc. Whatever isn’t your zone of genius but that’s an essential part of your day-to-day.
You can finally delegate. Hallelujah!
But like everything in business, delegating takes a special skill that’s often learned if letting go of control doesn’t come naturally to you. It takes work and it takes trust, and when you’re able to do it you can spend more time doing what you love in business. You can do the thing you went into business to do in the first place.
So how do you get to the point where delegating feels easier?
Don’t hire too early
Many business owners get overwhelmed with administrative tasks in their business and decide to hire a virtual assistant–too early. The problem is that they don’t actually know what they want to outsource yet and aren’t quite ready to let go of some of the work. Sometimes, a VA isn’t the next (or first) best hire.
In order to hire smart, you must first decide what role you’re hiring for, then develop job descriptions mapping out the exact tasks you plan to delegate. Be clear on expectations and responsibilities so your new hire knows the outcomes you expect. You should also have standard operating procedures in place, including systems and processes for doing the work. Without that, training your new team member will be difficult and frustrating–and neither one of you will be happy with the result.
Find a complementary personality
Different personalities are meant for different roles in business. Some people are more creative, others do well in following step-by-step instructions (that might be stifling for the creative). If you struggle with systems, having someone who can help you stay on target would be a really good supporting administrative role fit.
At the same time, other roles might need to complement your personality in a different way. When hiring someone to do audience-facing tasks, like customer support or marketing, you might want to find someone whose personality is a good match for yours. This ensures that your clients and prospects have the same experience as they’re getting to know your brand as they do once they start working directly with you.
I probably don’t need to tell you that when you hire for your business, you’ll need to be really clear about the expectations for your new team. The better your onboarding process, the easier it will be for you to let go of the tasks you’ve hired someone to complete.
I recommend walkthrough videos, style guides and clear deadlines for any new team member as well as check-in calls to ensure she knows your door is open for questions. The more information you provide at the beginning of your business relationship, the better. Remember, your team members can’t read your mind; you’ll have to communicate with them more early on and then you can slowly ease up and get back to your tasks.
Have a business hub
New hires need to have one central place to go when they have a question or need additional information. A business hub centralizes assets like hex codes, social media links, passwords, SOPs, contractor roles and responsibilities and more.
A business hub is an essential tool in any business, particularly one with a growing and virtual team. It also makes space for more ease in your business; a business hub is just one part of an easier-to-manage business.
It takes time, effort and sometimes some blood, sweat and tears to get to the point where you get to spend most of your time focusing on just what you love to do in business. It’s a process and one that you have to go back to again and again, especially after big milestones–like opening a new revenue stream or growing to a certain threshold.
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