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The ‘DIY’ Trap Solopreneur’s & Business Owners Fall In

Business Series - Article 1

snehalrsingh.com

“Whenever you see a successful business, someone once made a courageous decision.” Peter Drucker

Remember the days when you did “All by yourself” – Took the first steps, tied your shoe-laces, drove a car or rode a bike? You did all those things. And you did it by yourself.

As we grew up, however we still are dead set on – Doing it all by self. Being independent and doing it all yourself are two different things. If you are trying to use the same philosophy for running your business, then you might just be killing your business. This one for sure – All by yourself.

There could be one of the following reasons why we do so

• Find difficult asking for help
• Not ready to invest
• I have all the time to study and do it all
• Fears and Barriers

Honestly there are infinite reasons that we could be doing so.
Being Creative is great and being talented is added advantage. However, one common thing I have noticed through coaching my clients is the trap of DIY leading to a vicious circle of starting over. Doing all by self also slows down the process.
If you are a micro/small business owner or an independent consultant/trainer or professional, then let me break it to you – the title that you hold is not what you really do. Its like working for a profile but doing so much more and getting paid peanuts.

Image Credit – https://www.providesupport.com/

You are all the following things:

  • CEO, COO & Director
  • Marketing Head
  • Sales Person
  • Designer
  • SEO
  • HR 
  • Many more depending of your work -line

Point is – What do you want to do? Save your energy to do what you do best – the end product or divide your energy in playing all the other roles that can be delegated. Few things as a solopreneur or business owner you would not be able to delegate – like selling your products, branding, Marketing and so on. However, there are many that you can delegate.

Trust me, when I am writing this article it reminds me how many times I did everything all over again. I started my first website in 2011. I was like you too. Save as much as possible and do it on my own. I did not get a single hit on the website for a year. I even designed my own logo. It took me forever to create the site as learning and implementing was an ongoing process. All of this work and no returns. But hey I did not give up. I was just a freelance trainer then, with time every 6 months I got up-skilled and kept adding feathers to my hat. Every feather added my task was doubled – as my vision was getting clearer, the website changes were also happening and every time I felt the work that I did earlier was not good enough and I literally started all over again. Imagine the amount of time & energy wasted in doing things that were not my expertise. My expertise is talking to people, connecting, training, coaching instead I was sitting at my system figuring out complex technical matters which I still don’t get at times. This is just one bit. There is so much more to the business aspect apart from this and I was trying to do all myself. Moral of the story – after 5 years of repeating the viscous circle of starting over I realized this needs to stop. If you are the first generation in your family to set up a business, then I think you would relate to my story.

What differentiates the millionaires to small business owners is the decision making when it comes to investment in the business. I am happy to break it to you that investing in small business is not really that expensive, but it is certainly worth it.

Let’s talk about basics. Today we are in an information world, hence, we cannot deny it anymore that social presence is required to build the business.

Few things that every business needs

  • Vision – Mission statement 
  • Products – variety, flexibility 
  • A good website, Personal branding – Logo & Design 
  • Social Media Marketing 
  • Bookkeeping – Financial Planning 
  • Social Presence – Brand Awareness

Each of these categories have sub categories and sub categories to it too. Your niche is your product, and that needs your 100 %. The rest can be done by the professionals.

What matters the most is the Core Business + Social Interaction. If you delegate the rest of the tasks and invest in getting it done, you not only save on your energy, but it is done the right way and more effective way. There is no learning time, hence errors are less.
Invest in your business. Some need time investment, some need money and few would need both.

Few steps you can take

  1. Find a web-designer (You don’t need the best – you just need someone who understands your needs and technical stuff) 
  2. Invest in buying the books related to business management. Read and implement. 
  3. Buy a good planner. Keep all your data in one place. Helps you organize yourself.
  4. If you want to go big. Invest in a training or hiring a social media expert. (There are many free one’s available on coursera and udemy. Invest your time – rather then doing what you feel is right) 
  5. Join Social Community Groups. (BNI, Chambers of Commerce, Toastmasters, Profession Specific Groups) Invest in the fees. You would certainly get returns. 
  6. Meet a finance consultant or a business consultant. Understand how cash flow works. (LOA – Start living like a millionaire if you want to be one) 
  7. You are not a good writer?That’s okay. You do not have to know it all. Then don’t try copy-pasting from other websites. Invest in a writer. Fiverr has made this very easy.

How to decide which task needs to be delegated? Being a leader means knowing yourself well enough to know when you should take on a task, and when it makes more sense to hire someone or outsource. Asking following questions to self would help you.

  • Is this something that I love doing?
  • Is this something that only I can do or can I delegate this?
  • By not delegating, am I compromising on the quality?
  • By not delegating, am I taking the time away from the work I really want to do?
  • Are the tasks stressing me out? If you are passionate about your work, you will never feel stressed.

“Perfection” & “I can do it all” are the biggest barriers in growing business. Keep your perfection limited to your products and customer service, rest get it done from the best professionals.

Your work & business should be an essence of you and should get the best. What you sow, so shall you reap.

“The biggest mistake a small business can make is to think like a small business.” – Anonymous

Originally published at www.snehalrsingh.com

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