So many people in small businesses feel that doing things for themselves is the way to go. “It costs me nothing,” is usually the justification for the decision, and on some levels that is very true. The reality though is that it costs time, and as we all know, time is money; there is a very real value to a person’s time and trying to do everything yourself can often translate to last opportunities elsewhere. The reality is you need to focus on what you do well and let other experts in their fields do what they do well so you have the best possible outcome in all areas. Here are a few areas where business owners often err, and try to take things on themselves.
Yes, there are template driven sites that will allow you to make something yourself. It might not even take too long. But just because you know how to programme the burglar alarm or the VCR doesn’t mean that you are a technical wizard, a designer or an IT security expert. Making a website is one thing, running one and ensuring that it can actually do what is required is quite another. You also want it to look professional. The site will need to be responsive, you will need to register a domain, you will need to buy SSL certificate Australia requires, there is so much to think about. Leave it to an expert.
Word of mouth is great and if you can find people via recommendations from others that you know and trust, then great. But if not, use an agency. There are companies who specialize in recruitment, they handle the vetting process and the reference checks and the initial interviews. It saves you spending hours sifting through countless CV’s and setting up appointments and interviews. Yes, these people charge for their services, but it’s cheap at the price and is almost certain to find you a better candidate than if you took out an advert yourself.
Every business needs a degree of media exposure and yours is no different. But unless you are huge you almost certainly don’t require a fulltime PR resource. And while you may be able to write and you have some media contacts it is not a process that you want to be tackling as the business owner. You need to keep your eye on the goal and that is not PR, it’s growing the business and driving revenue and customers.
While you don’t want to hand over the keys of the safe and the details of the bank account to any third party, you do need to make sure that the company’s books are in order. Left alone for any length of time and the finances can end up in a horrible state. What is the income, salaries, is tax being paid? If it is, is it correct? How about cash flow? Depending on how big you are and the number of transactions that you are doing you won’t need somebody full time, but the goal should be to ensure that when the financial year end rolls round that there isn’t a horrible panic with loads of stress and potentially unseen and nasty surprises.