There are telltale signs when your business has hit a plateau. Sales are steady, but they don’t allow you to invest in development or explore new ideas. You are turning away new opportunities because they seem too risky and you’re afraid of failing. You budget and plan for today and not for the future.
Here’s a quick pro-tip. Staff where you are most uncomfortable. Outsource what’s not moving your bottom line right now.
Don’t Shy Away from Legal
Most entrepreneurs don’t take the next step in their business because it becomes “too complicated.” They think about all the possibilities of what could go wrong, rather than what can go right. When Mark Zuckerberg created Facebook in his Harvard dorm room, I’m sure he wasn’t imagining that Facebook would face challenges like election fraud, data hacks, and ultimately lead him to testify before US Congress. His simple idea of connecting college classmates has turned into an international community connecting continents.
Don’t shy away from your biggest idea. If the paperwork or legal hurdles seem too daunting, research next steps on free sites like LegalZoom.com then request a free consultation with a business attorney in your state. Ask how this new idea impacts payroll, tax status, your business license and if it requires any new licensing or registration. Arm yourself with information before shying away from turning your idea a reality.
What is Marketing?
I get this question all the time. It usually starts something like… “I’ve heard of marketing, but what do you actually do?” If you’re nodding your head in agreement- probably a good time to outsource to an expert! Marketing covers all the outward-facing facets of a business. Think of marketing as you would think of a first date. You carefully select your outfit (look & feel or brand), the conversation (message), and date location (digital presence & store atmosphere) to make a great first impression.
Branding, messaging, content creation, website development, social media etc, all play an integral part in developing your company’s identity and nurturing your customer pipeline. That being said, it is impossible, even for marketers, to have a complete marketing suite without any areas to improve. If you find yourself struggling for consistency or that your sales have fallen flat- it’s probably time to consult with a marketing professional.
Book Keeping, Taxes, and Forecasting Galore
It takes a special person to find a love for finance, and when you find that person never let them go. In order for your business to grow and thrive, you’ll want an Excel expert on your side to manage sales projections, budgeting, and daily expenses. Without these specialized skills, your big ideas can lead to company closure. But don't let the fear of failing hold you back. If you’re uncertain of where to invest in your company, find a financial advisor or accountant you can meet with quarterly to review your goals and actual expenses to make sure you’re on track.
Hire A Virtual Assistant
Are you spending time responding to emails, managing calendars, or making sales calls? These are all important tasks to manage the day-to-day of your business, but you don’t really see the dollars rolling. And it can actually cost your company big bucks. Before searching for a virtual assistant, tally up the time you spend on administrative tasks during one month. Then calculate how many hours you spend a week on average completing administrative tasks. (Your hourly pay x avg. admin hours a week x 4 wks). How much is it costing your company? If you're spending more time managing day-to-day work than actually growing your business, you should consider hiring a virtual assistant.
Don't let fear or the daily grind keep you from moving forward. Challenge your business to try something new once a month- even if that means outsourcing.