Since I’ve started my business, I’ve worked directly with dozens of amazing freelancers and had conversations with hundreds more. I could go on and on about how amazing you all are, how brilliant and courageous and world-class at what you do.
But I’ve also seen a pattern that trips a lot of people up.
At some point, you’ll get busy. Very busy. You might already be there. You’ll want to grow, but you won’t have time to do #allthethings, so you’re going to start looking for solutions.
When you do, keep an eye out for these three tendencies that could derail your search...or even make your problem worse.
Hiring a Virtual Assistant or buying a software tool to solve your problems
Virtual Assistants sell their services as a way to lighten the load on your shoulders. Hundreds of software tools exist to make your life easier and make things happen faster. Seems like a no-brainer, right? Shouldn’t this solve your time issue?
Unfortunately, it rarely works that way.
Think of VAs and software tools as pouring gasoline on the fire you already have going.
If you have a lot of clarity and action, and you want to just move faster down the road you’re already on, then both assistants and software tools will make that happen.
But if you don’t have a lot of clarity, or are struggling to take consistent action in a single direction, or feel like there’s a bit of chaos in your business - both resources will amplify what’s already there.
Instead of hiring virtual assistants or buying software to solve your problems, take a moment to get clear on where you want to go and how you want to get there...THEN loop in outsourcing and software to get there faster.
Using outsourcing to avoid learning time management, marketing, or leadership skills
When you’re thinking about what to offer to your clients, staying within your zone of genius as much as possible is 100% the way to go.
But if you want to run a business, there are a few things you’re going to need to learn, even if they don’t come naturally, particularly marketing, leadership skills, and managing yourself (especially your time).
The learning curve of entrepreneurship is steep, and you can’t outsource the core elements of it. You can get help, but at the end of the day, you have to be willing to learn how to run a business and lead both yourself and others.
Trying a variety of tactics to achieve superhuman productivity
There are a lot of tools out there for getting more productive, and a lot of them will help - but none of them will turn you into a superhero.
You’re going to have parts of the day when you can’t think strategically.
You’re going to have good days and bad days.
You’re going to need breaks.
Be careful not to let productivity tools create impossible expectations in your own mind.
If you’re constantly beating yourself up or setting goals you can’t possibly achieve, you’ll only hurt your ability to move forward.
Every entrepreneur alive is human; let yourself be human too.
Tell me: have any of these tripped you up?