Maybe when you first get started in business, you can handle everything. I started out on my own, and I did just fine. I handled calls from clients, I designed and coded my own website, I made my own prints… and my business ran beautifully. Why? Because there wasn’t really that much to handle.
Soon, my website started to expand – I was dealing with more and more pages… and building each one from scratch. When I needed to make changes, I had to get in there and make them manually. No worries – computers are one of my strengths, right? I have a degree in IT, so I was good to go. Well… not so much. My website became more and more unwieldy. Eventually, I had to rebuild it from the ground up – streamlining and cleaning things up. As technology advanced, my website needed constant maintenance. I was up to the task, but it was taking up a lot of time. I still needed to worry about printing and marketing and finances. And then there was the writing and editing I needed to get done. I was falling behind on eBooks and blog posts, and I always felt that I was fighting an uphill battle to get things done. The business was starting to feel overwhelming, and I wasn’t making progress.
That’s when I knew I needed to delegate. I looked at the things that were taking up most of my time, and I looked at my weaknesses. I handed over most of the back-end programming for my website to Jay, and started using SmugMug for prints and sales. Writing and editing was becoming a major albatross, so we hired an editor. It was an expense… but her help made it possible for me to focus on other things which brought in revenue. (Thank you, Sue!) We were finally making progress again… but I knew we weren’t there yet. We still needed help with marketing. So we found someone to help us out with that as well. Delegating tasks freed us to up to focus on building our business, and creating our products.
It’s not easy to take that first step toward delegating. It costs money to hire people to help you out, and finding good help isn’t always easy. But if you find your business stagnating, it might be a good idea to start looking for bottlenecks in your daily workflow. Maybe it’s time to get some help!