Working smarter essential to supporting growth of your small business

A couple weeks ago I wrote a post about the importance of learning how to delegate. Aside from the importance of empowering employees by giving them ability to make decisions, delegating also means you are freeing up valuable time to concentrate on business growth. Today I’d like to talk about other ways to work smarter and thereby give yourself more time to pursue growth.

First, delegating responsibility to in-house employees is not the only way you can free up time. You can also outsource work. This works whether you have employees or don’t. For example, I use WordPress for this blog. While I find it reasonably easy to navigate through the innards of WordPress, I outsource any design changes I want to make to a company in Georgia called Graphic Technique. Why? Because they can make changes far faster than I can since they are far more familiar with the application than I am. They can usually do in 15 minutes what it would take me a half hour to figure out. So since their hourly rate is significantly lower than the hourly rate I charge my clients, it makes more sense for me to be working on client work and earning money while they are fixing the blog. I’ve also found that they are extremely responsive so they get to things much faster than I ever would on my own.

Yes, I could find someone closer to home to do this work, but I live in an expensive state. So it’s almost certain that anyone I could hire here would cost more than the folks in Georgia. This rate differential is why a colleague of mine hires a virtual assistant who is in Minnesota, instead of hiring someone in the Boston area where she lives. In fact, everyone I know who has a virtual assistant has someone in a less expensive area. Outsourcing work to parts of the country (or even the world) that are less expensive than where you live is just a smart way to work. Virtual assistants are a great way for those of us who work alone to remove time-consuming work from our schedule without adding the costs associated with an employee.

A second strategy for working smarter is to make sure you’re using all the tools are available to you to help with routine tasks. For example, Intuit, the makers of QuickBooks and the company I and millions of others trust their tax preparation to, can help you speed up your payroll function and they even offer some employee benefits designed especially for small businesses.

Another company, FreshBooks, offers cloud-based billing services. The fees for both these companies are very reasonable, but perhaps most importantly, their ease of use makes it simple for you to take care of essential functions more quickly, again freeing up vital time. So before hesitating and saying, “Gee, I can do this on my own and don’t need that expense,” instead ask yourself how valuable it would be to have more time available to focus on bringing in new clients or customers. It’s just smart business to keep abreast of all the new tools that are available to you to streamline your work so you’re freed to focus on business growth.

3 comments

  1. Stu says:

    I like keeping my books w/intuit's stuff, it's no trouble to integrate new stuff they make when you need it. Picked up their point-of-sale machine at the warehouse club last year, and it's the greatest thing since quicken and sliced bread

  2. Trevor says:

    To make any business grow successful requires lots of hard work by website owner. About working smarter essential to supporting growth of small business whatever shared here is highly effective to follow and to make any small business growth successful. Thanks.

  3. Think_Energy says:

    Very useful! Check out our most recent blog post – On Today's Agenda: Work Smarter – we've listed this article as a resource.

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