It’s an age old problem that is talked about by the many not the few. Whether you’re employed or self-employed work life balance can be a challenge.
Since I became self-employed last year I have noticed a real shift in my own work life balance. Where weekends were set in stone as an employee, they are now sometimes used as an overflow to my week but, likewise a Tuesday might become my new Saturday if I can work things around my workload and commitments.
One thing that we talk to clients about regularly is outsourcing, not only to free up your time and help with your work life balance but also to free up your business. Getting stuck in activities that could easily, cost effectively and usefully be done by someone else gives you the time back to focus on the real value you bring to your business.
As a business that both acts as an outsourced resource for clients but that also uses outsourcing we see the benefits from both sides. Here are some things to consider when looking to others to support your business needs:
Choose someone you can work well with. To make outsourcing work for you you need to trust in the abilities of the people but also find it easy to communicate with them
Take it step at a time. It can be tempting to leap into outsourcing and give away too much. Test the water first, there may be some tasks that although you can outsource could make you feel a loss of control of your business. Ultimately you are still the owner so make sure you still know what is going on
Be clear in the scope of work. Make sure both you and the people you are outsourcing to understands the scope of work and the expected outcomes. Too many times these relationships can fall apart when both parties aren’t on the same page.
Don’t always be guided by price. Cheaper doesn’t always mean value for money and expensive doesn’t always mean top quality. Review the credentials of the people you are outsourcing to. Ask to speak to current clients or get testimonials to get a feel for the value of work you are receiving
Make sure to sign a contract. Before you take anyone on board make sure that you sign a contract – you need to cover confidentiality, T&Cs for payments etc. and even look at notice periods if the relationship should breakdown.