Tag Archives: Focus


Top 5 Tasks Small Business Owners Should Outsource

February 4, 2015
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tasks you should outsource


The biggest struggle for small business owners is wearing too many hats.  When you become a business owner you immediately take on many jobs all at once, so it stands to reason you might not do them well. It’s the norm to do this at the beginning but as your business grows, is it the best use of your time?  A MAJOR lesson I have learned in my 15 year journey as a business owner is to value my time.  Do you value yours? 

One of the things I hear over and over again is “I can’t afford to get someone else to do it!”  Really?  My response to this is to get the business owner to sit down and work out how much time they are spending on tasks that can be outsourced.  Once that bit is done, I ask them to work out how much their time is worth. For example if they are spending hours doing their own bookkeeping, fitting it in when possible (late evenings, weekends), and their time is worth say £30 per hour (generally more), why wouldn’t you outsource to someone who can do it for £15 an hour?  AND, they’d get it done in a much shorter time.  Remember, the bookkeeper knows what they are doing. Base your time per hour by how much YOU earn in that hour.  By outsourcing, not only are you using your time in a savvy way, you’re getting rid of the psychological baggage rattling around in your head – the niggle that reminds you you’ve still got it to do, the one that goes on for weeks then you end up doing the work all in one go when you’re tired and want to be doing something else. If you are losing time with family and friends due to working late evenings and weekends here’s a reality check.  You CAN’T get that time back. It’s literally priceless.

Bookkeeping: Bookkeeping is the first task small business that owners routinely neglect and struggle with managing in their operations. Do not let this happen to your small business. By outsourcing your basic accounting services to a seasoned bookkeeper, you will have the ability to use updated financial information to run your small business. A bookkeeper can do your accounting work a lot faster and more accurately than you can, and it is affordable.

Payroll:  Unless you run an accounting firm, you should not be doing your own payroll. If you hire an outsourcing company to do your payroll, then you can rest assured that you and your staff will have no issue when income tax season rolls around. If you do the payroll in-house, then you need to stay on the top of rules. The fees to outsource payroll are not very expensive, so do yourself a favour, let a payroll service handle it. (psst… I’ll let you into a secret, I outsource my payroll!)

Social Media Marketing: There are plenty of solopreneur marketing consultants and social media marketing agencies that can handle developing your social media strategy, content development and social promotion for your company. When you perform these tasks in-house, you often fail to retain the consistency of doing them.. Just remember that social media is a long term strategy, so be prepared to invest 12-24 months to achieve your goals.

Administrative Support: Do you often feel like you wish you had another pair of hands to help you in your small business? Utilizing virtual assistants is a cost effective way to get routine tasks handled in a  business  You can use a virtual assistant for maintaining your personal schedule, database, preparing mailings, email newsletters, copy editing, blog maintenance, booking travel arrangements, invoicing, collections, voicemail and email management.

How are your pickled onions?

January 28, 2015
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pickled onions

Odd title to the email you might think. Why ask the question anyway? Here’s why.  A jar of pickled onions is the kind of thing that gets opened, a few taken out and then they sit.  They sit at the back of the fridge and get forgotten.  A few months down the line you remember they are there but by that time, it’s too late.  They’re out of date so you end up chucking them.  I managed to finish a jar of pickled onions the other day which was left over from Christmas.  As I was fishing the last one out I remember thinking I couldn’t remember the last time I EVER finished a jar. A small feeling of satisfaction came over me.

The point is how many jars of ‘pickled onions’ have you got sat on your desk or in your work place?  The little jobs that never get done?  Ask yourself why they are still there and why haven’t they been done.  Hate doing them? Lack of time?  These are the things that niggle in the back of your mind and can become energy draining. You knowthey need doing but you keep putting them off. 

So what’s the answer?

There is no easy answer. A good place to start is to look at how productive you really are during each working dayAre you busy busy or are you busy doing nothing busy?  I’ve been keeping an eye on what I do recently and identified a few bad habits that are not productive.  One of my top bad habits is breaking off in the middle of a task or project to check my emails.  How many of us are guilty of that?  Not only does it stop me doing what I’m doing, it stops my focus.  To change that habit, I now close down my email programme throughout the day only opening it at specific times.  A frightening thought to some but it really does work and I have become far more productive.

Once you’ve identified areas where you waste time and do something about it, your productivity will increase and you will be surprised at how much ‘extra’ time you have. The next thing to do is to stick to your new habits.  Don’t shove that time aside because something else crops up. FINISH THOSE PICKLED ONIONS!

The ONE Thing that is guaranteed to help you

January 21, 2015
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Tick List


I am always trying to find better ways of working which I can pass on to my clients to help them get more out of their day.  There are loads of resources out there in the forms of books and masterclasses, some which are really expensive.  As a small business owner I know that I want to choose wisely when I’m spending my money.  And in my experience, expensive doesn’t necessarily mean great results.  Not one thing works for everyone.


I’ve just found a great little resource I think could help you enormously. And it is one thing… quite literally.

After I survived the 2004 tsunami, life considerably changed for me and one of the things that has happened, even 10 years on, is that I try to cram as much as I can into every day, simply because it could be my last.

The point is, I sometimes set myself ridiculous goals and feel frustrated when I don’t achieve them.

This little resource has been a great help.

It’s a book by Gary Keller with Jay Papasan called ‘The ONE Thing’.

It’s an easy read, has short chapters and has already started making life easier for me. If you want fewer distractions and less on your plate (yes please!) but want more productivity, more income and more satisfaction, I believe this could be your starting point.  At £6.29 for a paperback copy, cheaper for Kindle, it won’t break the bank either.  I would recommend this book as one you should read as part of your continuous development plan, and a great kick start to 2015.

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