When I got started as an entrepreneur and investor I didn’t have a ton of cash to pay people for everything. I had to do a good bit myself still… like mowing the lawns at my properties, doing my books, buying stamps, etc. But, if I would have known what I know now… I would have found someone to do all of that for me years sooner, earning me tens of thousands more (and making life more fun and fulfilling).
FIRST, we need to root out the wrong thoughts you have on “outsourcing” or “hiring” that are holding you back.
1) It’s expensive to pay people to do things
WRONG: It’s more expensive for you waste hours doing a task you could pay someone $8-10/hr to do for you. Your hours should be spent marketing and bringing in revenue, not doing medial tasks. Don’t worry about creating a logo, updating your website, or stuffing letters because it’s “cheaper”. Nope. I’ll show you ways to get it done cheap so youcan spend that time creating new marketing, talking to sellers/buyers, making offers, so you can earn 10x more new income than it costs you to pay for your new outsourced workers.
2) I don’t have any money to pay people
WRONG: I’ve had people work with me for free for up to 3 months before… as interns, or just because they wanted the experience in the real business world. Upwards of 22% of working age Americans don’t have a full-time job right now. They’re motivated to earn anything, and many are motivated to just get any new experience they can put on their resume… even if they don’t get paid for it.
3) I don’t know what I would have people do for me
WRONG: It’s not usually that you don’t have enough things to hand off to other people, its that you’re not CLEAR enough on your goals and what you’re doing (and why) to be clear on what steps you need to be taking in your business… to be clear on what you should be doing yourself (high value stuff that makes you money) and what you should have someone else do. If this is you, you need to get clear on your goals, your “why”, and your specific 30-60-90 day plan for what you need to do in your business. Once you’re clear and your taking action w/ a clear plan… a billion things will show themselves that you need to find someone else to do for you.
4) I hate managing people
WRONG: I read in a book recently, the roles of a leader are to “ predict the future/set the vision and to delegate”. If you’re not charting out the vision and path of your company and delegating tasks to other people… you’re not a leader. If you hate managing people, find someone who you can partner with in your business who can manage people. Or even better, if you’re going to be successful in business and really take hold of your life, you NEED to sharpen your leadership skills. I find working with the right people is actually fun and MORE rewarding than working by myself. The “fear of managing people” I feel is more of a fear that you won’t live up to your or their expectations as a leader… so you blame it on the other people being tough to manage. I’ve done that myself, that’s why I know.
How and Where To Find People On The Cheap
Most people tell you that you need to look “online” on places like elance.com or guru.com. Those are good places for specific things (random low skill web work, decent logos, finding someone to update your website for you, etc.), but I’ve found other places are better. Here are some great places to start.
Small Online Type Tasks – Image editing, editing audios, simple logos, random stuff
- § Fiverr.com – Can get quick image edits, mp3 recordings cleaned up, etc for $5.
- § Craigslist.org – Tons of local people w/o work who can edit videos, post content to your site, help run your facebook and twitter, post properties to listing sites, etc… for under $10/hr.
- § 399design.com – We use them for many of our new sites now. Under $400 and you get great sites and great service
- § Your Local College – If you have a college in your town, find the department in the school that teaches what you need to get done (graphics, writing, web work, etc.) and talk to the teachers in that department, have them refer to you the kids in those classes who want work. I did this, my logos now cost me $45 from a college kid… rather than $300 at a logo service.
Offline / Local Stuff – Personal assistant stuff, stuffing envelopes, mailing things, putting up signs, etc.
- Craigslist.org – Same as above. Tons of off work people eager to do your random tasks for under $10/hr. I have a gal doing my grocery shopping, mailing things, hanging art in my office, etc for only $12/hr. Frees me up to do high value work that earns me money (that I actually love doing)
- Local Networking Groups – Don’t have one? Create one. I hired 2 people recently through referrals from a networking group I created locally for young entrepreneurs. Referrals are the best.
- Local College – College students are looking for internships. Create an internship program (www.internprofits.com shows you how) and submit it to your local college. I’ve done that twice. Free work 🙂
- Mentor an Up and Coming Investor – There’s tons of people who want to invest in real estate. If you’ve done a few deals and have a bit of experience, go to the local REIA and find an eager person who wants to learn. Have them work for free for you learning the biz.
I could throw some more places at ya… but truthfully, all of the best people I’ve got to do work for me have come from those places above. The biggest thing is you have to make the mind-shift from what I call “victim hiring” to “empowered hiring”. Too many people are afraid if they hire people, that they’ll train them, only to have that person leave within a few months… wasting your time with them. It’s a valid concern.
The solution is just making sure to truly screen people well.
If you get 4 people that respond to an ad on craigslist to do a video editing project, create a “mini-project” (something easy that will take them maybe an hour or two) and have all 4 do that same project at the same time. Give them all the same specs, the same deadline, and hire the one that does the best. Then create systems in your business so you only train one time ever, then your systems do it all for you in the future. On the next “work less – make more” topic I’ll dive into the simple as heck systems we use in my businesses so I only train once, and our systems take over and do it for me if that person ever leaves my company. Great stuff. That training alone has saved friends of mine well over $10k and countless hours… you’ll get it in the SI Insider issue after next. So, get your goals down now (and your life list), get clear on things, and aim to outsource at least one tiny thing in the next 2 weeks. Once you do, you’ll wonder why you hadn’t sooner. This alone can cut your work time by 20% or more 🙂