Caution! The following terms may make you feel queasy:
Accounting, I.T., Marketing, H.R. If you’re breaking out in a cold sweat, you’re probably a small business owner.
Now if you run your own shop, the chances are that you’re pretty good at something. In fact, I’ll bet that your business delivers an outstanding product or service to its customers because you’ve got the passion to do what you do well.
Unfortunately, you’re probably spending a lot of time and energy on things that have nothing to do with your customers. From accounting to technology, H.R. to marketing – these are the types of activities stealing your time and costing you money. And nearly every small business is doing these things internally even though they fall outside of their expertise. Why? It’s not because we get our kicks from making journal entries and updating software.
It’s because we’ve been taught business wrong.
Nearly all business training focuses on these support functions. Just think about the classes you took in B School: four different accounting courses (even though you’re not an accountant); Marketing 101 through 401; HR Management and Labor Relations. I could go on but I’m falling asleep.
We’re taught that we have to know all of this technical stuff to operate a business. But we’ve been given a false narrative. No one can develop enough expertise in all of these areas to perform them well, let alone manage others who do them.
And you can’t build a successful business by mastering the support functions.
If you’re still not sure, think about it this way: unless you own an accounting firm, bookkeeping skills don’t increase sales. And if you’re not in a technology business your grasp of software and network infrastructure won’t attract new customers. Without revenue, there is no business … and none of these functions produce revenue. So stop wasting your time.
Thankfully, it’s absolutely the best time in history
to own a business.
The modern marketplace offers access to all of the specialized expertise you need at a lower cost and with less risk than doing it in-house. Not only are there experts available to even the smallest businesses, but their knowledge can be purchased incrementally. You don’t have to hire an accountant or an I.T. expert full time – you can have access to them when you need it. Even better, you can acquire some expertise without paying professional service fees. Online resources provide much of the basic functionality covered here at very affordable subscription rates.
Delegating back-office support functions doesn’t mean you can ignore these elements of your business. Believe me when I say that business owners need to be educated in the principles of business operations so that they can tell if someone is full of sh**. You just don’t have to spend your or your employees’ valuable time doing it yourself.
Free your business to fulfill its purpose (which is to create profit by providing value to customers). Let the girls and guys who loved taking “Risk Analysis in Industrial Sectors 301” do your compliance reporting.