Six Things You MUST outsource to a Virtual Assistant.

Focus is one of the biggest secrets to success. So, start focusing on the core tasks of your business. But, what if you have a long, boring list of trivial tasks to handle before you can even begin to focus on the core tasks? What if you are too confused and can’t figure out what you SHOULD be focusing on? Aren’t these questions becoming barriers to your business growth?

Today, many start-ups and small business owners suffer from the superhero syndrome-a condition where business owners believe they can take on anything and everything on their own! While taking responsibility for your business is good, juggling too many hats at the same time, could eventually lead to your downfall, as you slowly begin to lose focus on the core tasks and what you should ideally be concentrating on as a business owner. You start dissipating your valuable resources across trivial tasks which can be better taken care of by someone else. This is where the need for a convenient solution arises.

If you are seriously looking at business growth or a balanced, personal life, you must think of hiring a Virtual Assistant. Now, before you get all excited and make a hasty decision of hiring a Virtual Assistant, ask yourself if there are aspects of your life that you need a break from and if there is a long list of other activities that you need to focus on. Once you have filtered out the activities that are best handled by a third party provider like an outsourcing company, you can then finally get down to hiring a Virtual Assistant.If you are new to outsourcing and don’t know where to tread yet, let us take a look at some of the tasks that you can outsource to a Virtual Assistant.

Managing e-mails

GetFriday-Virtual-Assistance- email management
Managing e-mails can be a whale of a job. Sifting through junk and responding to countless e-mails can eat into a good chunk of your productive time.Consider outsourcing e-mail management to a reliable virtual assistant. It will free up a lot more of your time than you would have imagined. Trust us!

Bookkeeping

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We all know how monotonous bookkeeping can get. It involves the time-consuming process of recording bills, invoices, payments etc. Imagine how much you can achieve in your business or personal life with the free time you get after outsourcing bookkeeping tasks to your virtual assistant! Numbers can get harrowing and with a Virtual Assistant in the picture, you won’t have to worry about one more complicated entry or computation.

Online Research

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Online research is another important task that many individuals and businesses carry out in their day to day lives. It also consumes a good fraction of your precious time. Online research, if outsourced, can earn you that much-needed time to focus on the activities that matter the most to you and that are crucial to your business.

Travel and trip arrangement

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We all know how much effort goes into planning a journey. One may face a lot of hurdles along the way when it comes to booking a hotel to suit the budget, hiring a taxi, booking cheap flight tickets and the like. With the help of a virtual assistant, focus on the destination and let your Virtual Assistant take care of all the nitty-gritties of making your journey a comfortable one.

Setting Reminders/Calendar management

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A well-managed calendar can help you sail smoothly through the month. Setting reminders is also an integral part of a well-maintained schedule. Outsource your calendar management activities to a Virtual Assistant and rest assured you will never miss another important deadline or family event!


Data Entry

GetFriday-Virtual-Assistance- data entry

Data entry is a simple task but can be monotonous and tiresome. Consider outsourcing data entry to a Virtual Assistant. It will give you a lot more time to do the things you love.

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Things You Should NEVER Outsource As a Small Business

GetFriday-Virtual-Assistance-Things You Should NEVER Outsource As a Small Business

As a small business owner, it can be a real struggle to stay at the “top of things”. What you should ideally be focusing on is how to run your business and attract new prospects. Like any business however, the things you may want to do may slam into the things that have to be done on a daily basis.

A great way to free up some time so that you can focus on growing the business is by engaging an experienced Virtual Assistant from an experienced outsourcing provider like GetFriday. A Virtual Assistant could be the answer to your growing business demands and help offload run-of-the-mill tasks like handling social media accounts as well as mundane jobs like contacting clients, email management, setting up reminders or devising a travel itinerary for you.

The possibilities are endless!

If you have decided to take the leap, be wary, because a bad outsourcing decision can be costlier than not outsourcing in the first place. Keeping that in mind, this post highlights three of the major things that you should NOT outsource as a small business and that are best handled internally.

Take a look!

1. NEVER Outsource Your Core Competencies

GetFriday-Virtual-Assistance-NEVER Outsource Your Core CompetenciesNever make the mistake of farming out your core competencies to virtual assistants. If you are a tech start-up, do not subcontract your technology or if you are a recruiting firm, don’t outsource your recruiters. Figure out what your company is really good at doing and outsource the auxiliary services that are related to these core competencies, if you must.

Let us take the following example. You could hire virtual assistant specialists to write and edit the content that you want to include in your inbound marketing efforts. But make sure that your in-house team makes the business or the editorial decisions as to how the content has to be written, what topics should be covered or the channels that should be used to propagate the content. Part of developing an effective outsourcing plan is to understand what your company is really good at doing and keep it in-house. Outsource the rest to a dependable, virtual assistance service provider.

2. NEVER Outsource What You Don’t Understand

GetFriday-Virtual-Assistance-NEVER Outsource What You Dont UnderstandThere are probably a hundred things that you might want to outsource at the moment, such as getting an assistant to manage your CRM, designing a shopping cart, developing a WordPress website and so much more! While most of these can be outsourced, if you don’t really comprehend how they work precisely in accordance to what you need – be it now or later, you could end up investing a lot of money on something that you’ll end up substituting very soon.

For example: You are unsure of how to create an online shopping cart, but you know that you require one that connects to your catalogue, can be easily modified, agrees for coupons etc. Even if you don’t know how to manually design a shopping cart, you will at least know how it works from an operational point of view. This is a situation that is considered safe for outsourcing. However, if you don’t understand the basics of how online shopping carts work at all, it is not advisable to blindly outsource it to a third party like a Virtual Assistant company. Chances are, you will never find out if the solutions they have recommended are effective enough. This is especially true when it comes to outsourcing software issues or technology and if you are a start-up. By relying on Virtual Assistants from the onset, you may miss out on the chance to understand the full picture on how the technology works. Outsource only what you need to. Ensure that the teams in charge have at least a basic understanding of what needs to be accomplished and the yardsticks that will be used to evaluate the final suggestions.

3. NEVER Fully Outsource Your Brand Identity

GetFriday-Virtual-Assistance-NEVER Fully Outsource Your Brand IdentityIf you are starting out, you need to focus on brand-building. Understand that you will attract more opportunities if you have built an effective brand strategy. Think of whether you have created an effective logo or brand message that will go on to resonate with your future clients. While there are Virtual Assistant professionals who can help build your brand message, tag lines or designs; your message and your brand identity need to strictly come from YOU. This is because, only you and your in-house teams know what it stands for and how the brand needs to be communicated to target audiences.

Even if you insist on outsourcing this aspect to the experts because you don’t have the time for it yourself, you need to at least be involved in the logo/brand creation process every step of the way so, that your brand still retains your identity. For example, would you mind walking into a tattoo studio and letting the tattoo artist instinctively create what he/she wants to, onto your skin? Tattoos are permanent and the first impressions that people get of your brand, are equally indelible. Though the tattoo artist will be creating the final art work, your inputs on how you want it done, the styles, colours or the design will solely come from you and will echo your thoughts/experiences. Now, think of your brand in the same way? Would you want to fully outsource your brand identity to a third party?

You might think that you can subcontract every small task to your Virtual Assistant. Though there are a lot of tasks that you CAN outsource to your virtual assistants, certain aspects such as the ones mentioned above, could risk colossal business damage. You need to do some prior homework on what your company does best, understand when the right time is to outsource and the credibility of your outsourcing provider.

What do you think? What are some of the functions or tasks that you will never outsource?

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Four Fool-Proof Ways To Overcome Writer’s Block With a Virtual Assistant

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Writer’s block is something every writer struggles with at some point in their lives. Since the lifeblood of every writer’s success lies in their ability to churn out quick quality content, a writer’s block could throw you off balance, especially if you have strict deadlines to meet.

The feeling of not being ‘good enough’ to write is all too familiar. But most of the time, a writer’s block is not really a ‘block’ at all. It’s just endless self-criticism and a noiseless outburst of the ‘stress’ you experience when you have to produce work that will not be viewed by your readers as flaming pieces of garbage. If people pen their thoughts down without worrying too much about perfecting the sentences, the flow of writing improves and gives the writers a rough skeleton to work with for later. Contrary to popular belief, a writer’s block usually occurs during the initial phases of writing and is common among professional writers, novelists, academicians, researchers and the like.

Many a time, people put their lives on hold until they can find the inspiration to write. Some of the activities that people indulge in for inspiration include going through ‘how-to’ blog posts on overcoming writer’s blocks (shooting myself in the foot?), taking long walks outside, completing household chores, reading poetic novels or hoping to find some inspiration by watching the plants in their backyards grow. Though these may provide stimulus for some, it does not necessarily work all the time.

What You Should Ideally Be Doing?

Writers have to invest countless hours of research and pore over a number of resources before they actually get down to writing the first few drafts.
With hours of prep work, professional writers almost always struggle for time. All this creates an even bigger problem if the writer is prone to experiencing writer’s blocks every now and then. The trick to overcoming a writer’s block is to work around the problem smartly. Though a request for help with writing at this point may be perceived as a critical weakness, it is in fact one of the smartest things a writer can do for his/her writing, without taking away the glory they deserve.

Hiring a Virtual Assistant can give you enough room to work around your creativity and will give you the space to write at leisure without letting the brass tacks or prep work get in the way. Though indirectly, this could help with overcoming writer’s block because you will have fewer things to worry about and will be able to concentrate better on the composition of your thoughts. Leave the research, keyword searches, vocabulary sheets and lots more to your VA. You’ll find that no matter what you compose, be it an online blog or a book, outsourcing a few aspects of preparatory writing work to a personal virtual assistant can definitely ease the pressures of a writer’s block.

Get your VA to ?

Do The Research Work

Research

Whether you are working on a research paper or writing a blog series, you will be required to do some amount of research if you want your final, written piece to look credible. Engaging your audience is crucial and presenting data or checking out the facts behind people, locations, characters and subjects can help you do just that.

For example, in the following two sentences, you’ll notice a difference in how the information is presented. The research and detail that goes into the second sentence will make you understand why the second sentence will be considered more reliable in the eyes of a reader.

Example 1

“Mike stole an orange bag from the Selfridges store and ran out as quickly as he could.”

Example 2

“Mike stole an expensive, orange, suede satchel from the Selfridges store and ran out as quickly as he could.”

A reader would most definitely be drawn to the second line, because it is a lot more descriptive and also gives the illusion that the bag is stolen from the store actually exists at Selfridges. The devil is in the details and carrying out proper research before any kind of writing, will only make your writing piece honest.

If you are starting out as a writer, you may not know where to look for information. Even if you do, you may find that ‘research’ can get exasperating and take up a lot of your time. That’s where a Virtual Assistant steps into place. No matter what online research you require for writing your blog, book or paper, you can outsource ‘research work’ of various natures to your VA and focus more on composing your written work.

Generate Blog Post Ideas & Page Optimization

If you are struggling with finding suitable keyword-rich titles for your blog posts, give your Virtual Assistant a rough idea of what you are expecting in terms of the title for the post and what the blog will contain. Your VA will carry out all the keyword research required to target the right audience and also come with up ideas for your next blog posts. Apart from this, get your VA to keep your blog pages optimized and can carry out competitor research so that you can gauge where you stand. All this data, presented in a comprehensive, easy-to-understand format by your VA, should be able to ease a part of the writer’s block and give you the freedom to write your piece in a relaxed manner.

Drafting Blog Posts

Drafting

If you continue to have a problem with writing in a lucid manner or you are not finding the time to complete your blog for the week, have your specialist Virtual Assistant work on a draft for you. All you will have to do in the end is go through it, format the content and hit the ‘publish’ button. Your Virtual Assistants, being jacks of all trades, are also talented wordsmiths. You’ll be surprised with the lucrative ideas they give you and the quality work they can come up with! They can handle all your website content work or if you require help writing your blog posts, statements of purposes, product descriptions or marketing content, they’ll get it done for you in half time.

Proofread Your Work At Every Stage

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Writing is just the first part of the problem. Once you have worked on the skeleton draft, you will have to string it all together for it to make more sense. That’s where proofreading and editing the content comes into play. Whether you need help with re-structuring sentences, use of appropriate vocabulary, spotting and correcting errors in spelling or grammar, outsource the task to your Virtual Assistant. Writing can be an extremely tiring activity and by the end of your piece, you will probably be left with very little or no energy to go over what you’ve written with a keen eye.

Virtual Assistants are trained to pay attention to the smallest details so, getting timely help with proofreading the errors and polishing your written work can help make all the difference to the final output. What’s more, this will make it seem like you never struggled or faced a writer’s block in the first place!

If ever you get stuck with writing, don’t panic. Follow the steps outlined above and never shy away from getting professional help when required. If you have a shed-load of other work that needs your undivided attention and you are not able to devote time to any of it because you are stuck with making your drafts look pretty, don’t bother! Have your VA take care of all your work for you. You’ll notice that over time, the writer’s block will wane in obscurity and your writing too, will improve!

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Superhero Syndrome At Large Among Small Business Owners

Batman

Being a superhero for your children, spouse, parents or partner is great, but the same cannot be said about your business. Sure, you may run a successful single-office agency and could be the jack of all trades for your business. But do you realize it could be detrimental if you are the master of none?

Most entrepreneurs take great pride in completing every task and jump at every small opportunity to be the only ones at the helms of their businesses. Chris Ducker, the author of ‘Virtual Freedom’ has coined a term for this situation and calls it the ‘Superhero Syndrome’ , a prevalent condition wherein entrepreneurs and small business owners believe that they can handle everything on their own without having to delegate or subcontract work.

Facing

Though there is nothing wrong with handling everything yourself, it is only prudent to outsource dreary business processes to specialized Virtual Assistants at the right time. This could save you from facing a burnout in the long run, can positively impact your business and give you the opportunity to let professionals handle specialist tasks at a fraction of the cost! What’s more, you have access to a large pool of skills and can outsource practically any aspect of the business you like!


So, what do you do, you ask?

What you should really be focusing on as a small business owner is to give more value to your clients, measure results, build ideas and re-strategize your business for the future.

Take a look at what you need to know about overcoming the ‘Superhero Syndrome’


Repetitiveness And Systemization

In a business, you’ll find that a lot of processes are repetitive and the repetition can in fact, be systemized. Consider a car service centre, for example.

When a car has been taken to a service centre, mechanics take their time to gauge the problems with the car before they get down to fixing them. However, when it comes to specialized jobs such as fixing the filters in the car or changing the cover for the seats, mechanics may not be able to handle these tasks themselves. There are specialized contractors and suppliers who provide these products and/or services.
When a filter or a seat cover needs to be changed, service centres will not waste their clients? time and their resources by learning how to change these filters internally or manufacturing leather seat covers themselves. They will instead, outsource the work to the professionals who carry out bulk supplies of these certain products outside the service centre. A final markup to the price is added, before handing your car back to you.

Ergo, the service centre is benefitting from making additional money out of a job that they are not even doing and are building a name for themselves. This is all thanks to the fabulous job done by the specialist suppliers/vendors, who helped the centre with their timely ? ‘behind-the-scenes’ support.


Okay, So How Does It Help My Business?

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Think about a similar situation for your business. You could outsource everyday functions to a professional Virtual Assistance company like GetFriday and end up saving a lot of time and money. This will ensure that you don’t work your way out of your own business and will also give you the time to re-focus on the core functions while your able team of Virtual Assistant professionals work behind the scenes and handle other aspects of your business for you.

On The Lighter Side?

It is okay to have delusions of being a superhero. But learning when to get your sidekicks (in this case, your Virtual Assistants) into the picture and sharing the load with them can help you do a better job of running the business and still give you the opportunity to govern the work being done.


Let’s take the classic examples of Batman and Robin for instance. Though we know which one of the two shoulders the mantle all the way through, Robin’s character was created for two very simple yet important reasons-

1.Batman needed a friend, a brother and a confidante. Someone he could talk to because a hero can very often find himself ‘alone’ in the humdrum of everyday life.
2.Robin, the Boy Wonder, was not just a wingman, but also a vigilante who kept Batman from making the wrong choices and was always around to ‘help’ Batman fight crime.

The reasons are straight forward. No matter how big a superhero you are, you will, at some point, require ‘help’. Whether it is a boy in green hot-pants who comes to the rescue or a resourceful Virtual Assistant, halfway across the world from you, a helping hand is all you need to ease your work burdens and can make you and your business a better one.

Got It. What Do I Do Now?

Take control and start by making a list that contains the following three columns-

>Outsourcing what you don’t like to do
>Outsourcing what you shouldn’t be doing
>Outsourcing what you can’t do

Once you have written down your tasks under each column, it will become easier for you to delegate your work to your professional Virtual Assistants. Your online virtual assistants will work flexibly to understand and learn the ways of your business and probably do your work better than what you would have done!

Rest assured, your Virtual Assistants can handle pretty much all your boring business functions and do a lot more specialist tasks that you wouldn’t be able to do yourself i.e. handling all your web page requirements, writing blogs, graphic designing, specialized SEO services, email management, accounting and so much more!

Be a real superhero by outsourcing unimportant functions in your business and take out more time to do high-value work, build networks or make time for the family. This will help you focus better on doing the things you love, can do and should do!

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Ten Reasons For Small Businesses To Outsource

The year 2009, for entrepreneur Chris Ducker, was fraught with commitments above and beyond necessary. He had a doting family to go back home to, but being an entrepreneur meant that he had to forego his personal time and suffer many sleepless nights because it was more about being ‘in’ the business rather than being ‘on top of things’. Luckily for him, he made some smart choices and was well on his way to gain that much-needed respite through outsourcing. Now, he works an average of 6 hours a day, can look into personal commitments, focus on building new business goals and advocates Virtual Assistance services, all the time!

If you’re managing a start-up and you’ve blown that amazing business opportunity because you missed a follow-up deadline or were too tied up with routine administrative operations for your business, then hiring a Virtual Assistant is something you might want to consider. However, the thought of hiring a Virtual Assistant for a first-time outsourcer can immediately trigger a feeling like the world is about to zap all the cash from your bank account. But it is not always so. In one of the earlier blogs in the series, we stressed on how to decide ‘when the right time is to outsource. In this blog post, we’ll give you plenty reasons as to ‘why’ you should outsource- especially if you are a small business owner or an entrepreneur. Read on!


1.Reduced Costs

Reduced cost

As much as small businessmen would like to believe, hiring a virtual assistant can in fact save you money instead of stretching your budget. Since a virtual assistant is not a full time employee, you won’t need to worry about payroll taxes, sick leave, vacation pay, health insurance etc. In the case of virtual assistants, they only get paid for the hours they work and in turn, add more value to your investment. For example: You might end up paying an in-house employee for 40 hours of work per week, despite the employee taking coffee breaks, going out to use the restroom and making ceaseless phone calls. However, if you hire a Virtual Assistant and you have purchased only 20 hours worth of work per month, you will end up paying the Virtual Assistant for only 5 hours of work per week! That’s a difference of almost 8 times! Ergo, it is safe to say that the costs of hiring a VA are a lot lesser as compared to hiring a full-time employee.


2.You Don’t Need To Provide Office Space

Office space

The best part about outsourcing is that you don’t need to worry about providing an office space for your Virtual Assistant. Global Virtual Assistants use their personal computers and their own internet connections to execute the tasks you send them. If you are a small business and you think that hiring a group of in-house employees and providing for large offices right away could cost your business, outsourcing could come across as a boon for you.


3.Training For VA’s Is Not Required

Every year, businesses spend thousands of dollars on training employees to update their knowledge on new software, tools and the latest technology. By outsourcing your work to a Virtual Assistant, you can easily save on all this money because Virtual Assistants are already trained and are quite well-versed with the latest online tools and software because their jobs demand it. Depending on the nature of tasks you want to outsource, you can either choose general Virtual Assistants, who are jacks-of-all and are all-rounders, or you could choose to hire specialist Virtual Assistants who are proficient at one particular job.


4.A Pool of Resources To Choose From

Pool of Resources

If you choose to partner with an outsourcing company, you’ll be working with a melting pot of specialists and gain access to a large pool of online resources. You won?t have to go looking to hire specialists, sifting through countless applications and interviewing hundreds of people. If you are a small business and you don?t want to waste your company?s resources and time searching for the right specialists for your job, partnering with an outsourcing company is easily be one of your best bets. Once you sign up, you will be able to outsource tasks of multiple natures to your Personal Virtual Assistant and then relax, knowing that your tasks are in safe and experienced hands.


5.You Can Quit Anytime

Firing an in-house employee can be a long and tedious process and there may even be instances, wherein you will need to abide by employee agreements if you want to avoid lawsuits. With a Global Virtual Assistant however, you don?t need to worry about any of it. You have the flexibility to fire your virtual assistant instantly and easily if deadlines are missed or the assistant repeatedly makes mistakes despite feedback.


6.Get Your Tasks Completed On Time & Efficiently

On Time & Efficiently

As a small business owner, you?ll realize that you have a ton of work to complete, no matter how important, tedious or repetitive. Who said that being an entrepreneur was easy? The trick to finding the right balance, is to work on tasks that have greater value (monetary or otherwise) and outsource the rest to your personal virtual assistant. This way you’ll find that your other tasks (which you don’t like to do or find too boring or time-consuming to complete) are being handled a lot more efficiently and are completed within the stipulated deadlines.


7.Boost Productivity

Boost Productivity

If you are a hard working entrepreneur or a small business owner and want to get more done in less time, you can boost your productivity with outsourcing. Having virtual assistants take care of all the tasks that you don’t like to do yourself means that you will gain that extra hour or two to focus on other important jobs and tasks at hand, thereby maximizing productivity and making more time for yourself in the day.


8.Re-Location & Travel Becomes A Lot Easier

Re-Location & Travel

If you are traveling, have to relocate or are stranded in a place due to poor weather conditions, you won?t have to worry about your projects coming to a stand-still because you can constantly stay in touch with your Virtual Assistant over e-mail, phone, fax or IM. This is especially important for small business owners who need to constantly travel to develop business connections and need to focus on brand-building for their businesses.


9.You Don’t Have The Skills To Handle A Certain Task


Skills To Handle A Certain Task

If you are not adept with the DIY approach, it would be wise to outsource the tasks that you believe you don’t have the skills for. Many entrepreneurs start businesses that revolve around their primary skills and interests. But the reality is that an entrepreneur has to wear many hats and has to get into all aspects of the business i.e. marketing, sales and almost every other department that requires the entrepreneur to be involved, even if they don’t have a background in it. Instead of working purposelessly and forcing yourself to do the jobs that you don’t have any idea about, you could outsource these functions of the business to outsourcing companies. For example: If you do not have a background in SEO or designing a website, it would be better to approach Virtual Assistants or professionals to get it done, rather than wasting your time on learning how to do it. Sounds about right, doesn’t it?


10. Your VA Can Also handle Your Personal Work

Personal work

When you start a business or you have been running your business ‘solo’ for the last few years, the worst part is, your personal life suffers in the first few years because you just have so much to do all the time! Having 5-10 in-house employees to help you with your business can definitely help you, but what about managing your personal work and your life? Your employees will surely not be able to help you out with your tax filing, your personal bookkeeping or order groceries for your wife. That is something that you will need to make time for, along with all the other work that you handle in your business. Having a personal virtual assistant could help you with this part of your life too. Apart from outsourcing your business functions, you can also subcontract all your personal tasks to your virtual assistant and expect maximum efficiency, dedication and delivery. With your personal and professional life sorted out, you will find that you will be able to boost productivity on the business front and will also be able to strike the perfect work-life balance and dedicate more time to your loved ones, with your newly-gained time.


Need more reasons to outsource?

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Six Activities To Grow Your Business

It is no secret that business owners and SME’s outsource, because it gives them more time to grow and streamline their practices. Entrepreneurs have long believed that outsourcing is a practice that only big companies can afford. However, more small businesses and entrepreneurs are outsourcing today because they can’t meet the expenses of in-house support services that larger companies maintain and because handling a number of onerous procedures and processes could slow down the process of growth. By outsourcing, businesspersons can get close to 5-6 hours of renewed time for themselves and profitably utilize their time to build better businesses with a few of these post-outsourcing activities.

Following are the 6 activities small business owners fulfill post-outsourcing:

1. They Attend Business Meetings

Attend Business Meetings

Outsourcing gives a businessman more time to think and dream for the business without limitations and ideate on the overall strategy and vision. Smaller businesses know that they have to make their businesses more competitive in order to survive and meetings are a powerful business weapon that encourage personal interactions and provide a great avenue for the quick pooling of ideas whilst giving a business owner a good reality check on the progress. Once a business’ lengthy processes have been outsourced, business owners have the opportunity to conduct and attend business meetings frequently and utilize these hours to discuss progress and work towards actuating plans.

2. They Streamline Their Business

Streamline Their Business

According to the founder of iTech Developers, Kevin McElligott, entrepreneurs ‘don’t realize that they can make things easie‘ and often undertake the burdens of shouldering all levels of business activity when they can outsource it instead. Through outsourcing, businesses can utilize the free time they get, to focus on the activities and strategies that really matter. Whether it is reorganizing the hierarchy, updating new technology or simplifying processes, small business owners have more time to focus on the important matters at hand, post-outsourcing.

3. They Travel for Business needs

Travel for Business needs

For dynamic businesses and entrepreneurs, travelling is most often a recurrent activity, is challenging and can take up a good bit of time. Whether it is travelling to close a deal in a new city, travelling to tap new markets or to acquire new projects; a small business owner cannot forego the opportunity to network or build partnerships through travelling, because of onerous business functions holding them back. Thanks to more small business owners taking to outsourcing in recent times, travel for business needs is an activity that entrepreneurs and small business owners undertake in their newly-gained time.

4. They Generate Fresh Ideas for Products & Implement Them

Generate Fresh Ideas for Products & Implement Them

With laborious or specialist functions outsourced, business professionals and small business owners have more time to pool ideas for new products and implement them. Time is one of the most important resources for a new business and to utilize this time to discuss fresh, untapped or niche ideas could generate more revenue for the business. Once a business has subcontracted work to a life outsourcing company like “GetFriday”, the business owner has cut off, what can safely be termed as “noise” and has effectively gained back time to discuss the makings of a new product and how it can help push the business to achieve its overall goals and vision.

5. They Acquire Other Businesses

Acquire Other Businesses

Once a business has delegated certain business functions to professionals or companies, they scour acquisition targets or at least plan for acquisitions if they have just started out. With renewed time, business owners focus on maximizing future synergies, realize cost-efficiencies for potential takeovers and significantly speed up their core processes to capitalize on future mergers and integrations.

6. They Spend Time With Friends & Family

Spend Time With Friends & Family

In the past, small business owners and first-time entrepreneurs undervalued the worth of their time. For example: When working out if a new venture would be financially viable they would have merely calculated the cost of materials and office space, but would have forgotten to add the cost of their time. This would have ultimately resulted in owners toiling away at odd hours for their business and losing out on important family time.

In more recent times, business owners outsource mundane work and utilize the time they gain with their families. Delegating repetitive processes will give a good 3-5 hours of free time for business owners to spend with their parents, spouse, make it for their child’s graduation night, go on short joy rides/trips with friends, make it back home for anniversaries and occasions, and attend events and so much more!

If you are a small business owner, outsourcing onerous processes early can help you with building a better future for the business and will also give you ample opportunities to plough back your new time to focus on other core activities, while managing your personal life. Sometimes, you really need to take a step back and strategize for your business and your life, while you let experts handle commonplace processes and functions for you.

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Debunking Common Outsourcing Myths

When you consider outsourcing, it means that you ideally want to avoid undertaking peripheral company functions on your own. Outsourcing has long been a strategic business practice and is a way of reorganizing or relocating a part of a company’s functions to a 3rd party, to boost productivity and improve business functions. Despite the numerous benefits that outsourcing can bring to the table, many first-timers or companies remain oblivious to the obvious and prefer handling all functions in-house due to the many myths and misconceptions associated with outsourcing. Through this post, we aim to debunk the 6 most prevalent outsourcing myths and unveil the realities.


Myth #1 – The Main Incentive For Companies To Outsource Are Reduced Costs

Fact #1 – Companies Outsource For Other Reasons Than reducing Costs

For a very long time, companies outsourced because they believed that it would help reduce costs. Due to the mismatch in expectations and reality, the motives behind outsourcing has also evolved over time. Reduced costs may be ‘one’ of the incentives to outsource a function but definitely not the main reason anymore. Rather, the quality of the services provided and the quick access to specialist service providers who can complete a job in a much more efficient manner than an in-house employee, have become some of the major impetuses to outsource. Let’s face it. If your company is not very proficient with SEO, chances are that an outsourcing partner that has a specialist team for SEO, can generate quicker results for your company and work more efficiently.


Myth #2 – There Will Be Cultural & Language Disparities

Fact #2 – Outsourcing Companies Are Trained To Handle Cross-Cultural Exchange

Apart from being just a myth, cultural and language disparities are also some of the greatest fears for first-time outsourcers. The fear being, that cultural and language barriers can pose obstacles during the process of exchanging vital information. However, it is safe to say that this is just a misconception. Most outsourcing companies hire qualified professionals that are experienced in cross-cultural exchange and are proficient with multiple languages, including English. India, Russia and Philippines are at the top of the league when it comes to deploying professional customer support teams who are both, fluent and familiar with multiple cultures and the English language.


Myth #3 – Clients Have No Control Once The Job Is Outsourced

Fact #3 – You Have As Much Control As You Would With An In-House Team!

This is one of the most prevalent outsourcing myths and is not as difficult to manage as most companies or people would like to believe. With check-points and methodologies established with the outsourcer, you can offer your suggestions, tested practices, sample frameworks and carry out regular checks on the progress of the job being done once you have outsourced a task. Frequent information-exchange and communication is a necessity and the more you exert control over an outsourcing company, the better your results and your personal virtual assistants’ efficiency. By providing feedback, you will not only be encouraging your virtual assistant to do better, but you will also be establishing a great working relationship.


Myth #4 – Outsourcing Is For The Big Companies

Fact #4 – Small Business Enterprises Have Benefited More With Outsourcing In The Recent Past

No one can take away the fact that large enterprises have made the best use of outsourcing in the past, but let’s not forget the scale on which these big companies outsourced. The decision to outsource nowadays is supported by different reasons for different companies and in the case of start-ups, they are driven to outsource because of the countless benefits. More small businesses are taking to outsourcing today to add value, know-how and experience to their business functions. It is all the more important for small businesses to focus on their core functions and grow their business rather than spend all their valuable time on laborious jobs that can be handled by professionals. An advantage in today’s time and age is that many outsourcers offer customized packages or prefer working for small business enterprises. Look out for these specific outsourcing companies or virtual assistance companies if you run a small business enterprise.

6 ACTIVITIES TO GROW YOUR BUSINESS


Myth #5 – Outsourcing Is Risky

Fact #5 – Your Thinking Is Risky

Sometimes it’s your thinking that can be risky and can stop you from taking the right step for your business. You may believe that handling all the functions in-house will save your company from a number of risks. Though this may be true to a marginal degree, there are a number of companies who were responsible for their own downfall due to colossal data exposure and inadequate, in-house security measures in the past.

Outsourcing companies on the other hand, have only grown and made their security policies more stringent. Experienced outsourcing providers and virtual assistant companies have always understood the importance of data security and these practices have always been treated with the highest priority. Routine measures such as encrypted data, superior firewalls, stringent work policies and NDA’s are some of the many measures that are given precedence when dealing with clients, sensitive data and their tasks. Outsourcing is an extremely safe practice provided you do your homework and choose the right company to work with.


Myth #6 – Outsourcing And Offshoring Are The Same

Fact #6 – No, They Are NOT!

You may have noticed that ‘outsourcing’ and ‘offshoring’ are interchangeably used, but they are definitely not the same. Outsourcing involves paying a 3rd party or a virtual assistance company to complete your work for you. Offshoring on the other hand, means relocating or moving your business efforts wholly to another country, instead of just hiring a company to handle key components of your business. Though the differences may seem negligible, there is in fact, a huge difference between the two terminologies.

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Six Ways To Use Your Newly-Gained Time Post Outsourcing

So, you decided to take the big step and hired a Virtual Assistant to help you get through life’s challenges. Outsourcing was never your top choice, but you had to, owing to the increasing work pressures, the costs of keeping an in-house assistant and the growing responsibilities you had to shoulder at home. Now you’re glad you hired a VA, but what next? What does one do with the free time and how does one transition into the new life with the newly-gained time, effortlessly?

Consider why you chose to outsource in the first place. Either you believed that a professional would do a better job than you would at a particular job, the costs of outsourcing were a lot cheaper than if you were to hire an in-house assistant or also because you realized that your children and wife were beginning to forget what you looked like.

With outsourcing, you finally got those laborious tasks out of the way and earned yourself a minimum of 2-4 hours for yourself everyday. There’s so much you can do! If you are unsure of how you can use this time productively, take a look at a few of these suggestions-

1) Read A Book

Keep yourself abreast with all the reading that you’ve missed out on all these years. Download an e-book if you’re running out of time or walk to the local bookstore to pick out a book you like. If you are a bookworm, there is no better way to spend your time productively than by reading. Reading can help you de-stress and can transport your mind into another world altogether, whilst also helping you sharpen your mind.

2) Prioritize Your ‘Bucket-List’ Activities

2-4 hours is a lot of time to tick at least one of the activities off your bucket-list everyday. Always wanted to sign up for a dance class? Go paragliding or volunteer at a local NGO? With the time you’ve earned from the outsourcing, you could try your hand at the activities that interest you. Finding a hobby or working on one, can help you put your job and/or life in perspective and can help you develop a new set of skills. It will also give you the chance to expand your networking opportunities and is a breath of fresh air when you feel like you’re on the verge of a total burnout.

3) Build A Better Business

Ever heard of the adage, ‘Do what you do best and outsource the rest’? Now that you have outsourced all the back-end work to your Virtual Assistant, you will find more time to focus on the core competencies of your business and set better goals. If you have had to manage all the aspects of the business yourself, you will know that your life was nothing short of a nightmare! With outsourcing however, you will find that you have more time to strategize, de-clutter your mind, reorganize your business and govern its primary activities to help it grow and sustain.

4) A Healthy You, Is A Happy You

Exercise well, eat healthy and meditate in your spare time. Rather than sitting at home and lazing around, go for a light jog or a long walk. Doing things that keep you feeling fit, physically or mentally can help you lose the stress you’ve been carrying around on your shoulders and will also give you the time to gather your thoughts. Furthermore, exercising regularly can help you discipline your mind, get your endorphins flowing and make you look and feel better. Need more reasons?

5) Spend Time With The Ones You Love

If you live with friends or family, spending your free time with them makes absolute sense. Make some time for your children and spouse. Attend your girl’s ballet performance or your son’s big game. Imagine the joy on their faces when they find that both their parents are in attendance. If you’ve missed out on those dinners with your friends or your partner in the last couple of months, make it a point to catch up with them during your free time and show them that you care and you are not anti-social. There is nothing more relaxing than to surround yourself with the people you love and who love you during your free time.

6) Invest Some Time In Personal Care

Once you find that you’ve got a flow going with outsourcing and your VA is handling all the work for you, don’t burden yourself with more work during your free time. Instead, invest this time for some personal care. Whether it is something as small as filing your nails, getting some sleep or hitting the spa, ensure that you make time for your personal needs everyday to shed those layers of stress. Though making money is important to make ends meet in today’s time and age, spending time for yourself can make you look and feel like a million bucks.

Life after outsourcing can be rewarding if you choose to make it so. The time you’ve earned is precious and limited. Make use of it productively and you’ll automatically find success and will be able to strike the perfect work-life balance in the process.

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Save 60 Minutes A Day – ‘Hi, I’m Richard!’

Don’t you wish you had the time to fly back home to be with your wife and kids this holiday season? Don’t you yearn to give your loved ones some of your time? Let’s face it. With so many people working 9-5 jobs everyday and managing whole businesses, it becomes almost impossible to make some time for yourself and also, your loved ones. Giving someone your time is intangible and the most irreplaceable feeling in the world. At GetFriday, we understand that ‘time’ is precious and creating fond memories with loved ones is crucial – one that can even beat the joys of winning a lottery or even bringing home fat pay checks!
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The Smart, Learning and Development Culture At GetFriday

“In essence, learning and development is at the core of what high impact performing organizations do” – Todd Tauber
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