If I had a nickel for every time I heard someone say “I know I need to delegate some of this stuff, but I can’t afford to do it right now. I need more clients first.” – I would be a very rich woman.
Look, I get it. Cash flow is tight. Every cent is going back into the business. Credit is so tight you are even putting in your own money to keep going from time to time. Taking on an extra expense makes no sense.
But let’s really look at it. You are working your heart out in your business. You spend your days networking, working with clients, developing relationships, getting your job done.
And you are spending your nights and weekends doing your bookkeeping, keeping your papers filed, sending out invoices, typing cards into the database, creating your newsletter, sending thank you notes, making phone calls, and on and on and on.
And if you are not spending your nights and weekends that way, you are worrying about all that stuff needing to get done, and feeling guilty and overwhelmed, and thinking you are a hopeless case because you are so far behind on that.
If you remember to have lunch it is only because you scheduled a lunch meeting. You have given up on having a full night’s sleep. And you can barely remember what a day off feels like – it has been so long.
And you are convinced everyone else is doing it better.
You are already working at or over capacity. And yet, you think that “if only I could get some more clients – then I would be able to get some help.”
When, exactly, are you going to work with those new clients? You have no time!
You think you need to increase your capacity for serving your clients before you increase your structures. But, you have no additional capacity. And you will have no additional capacity until you revise your structures!
One hour of work by a good virtual assistant, or bookkeeper, or intern will usually give you back 5 hours of your own time. (Both the time it takes to get the task done and done well, plus the time you spend worrying about it.)
I remember when I hired my first part time assistant. I was really worried about being able to afford her. I initially committed to 10 hours per month of her time, and I put that amount of money aside. My deal with myself was if I didn’t generate at least enough work to cover her time, I would not continue.
I don’t know about you, but paying someone $25, $50, even $100 an hour (for an expert) in order to have 5 to 10 more hours in my day or week is well worth the effort. Every single time I have expanded my underlying structures my business has increased exponentially!
Right now, for every dollar I pay a virtual assistant or other team member, I am making back about 20 times that in increased business. So now, when I really want to increase my capacity for new business I look at what else can I delegate?
Works every single time.
(c) Terry Monaghan 2010