I don’t blog often ‘cuz rhapsodizing about efficient office systems and how a P&L is a fantastic tool for running your business doesn’t do it for most folks and I have been advised not to bore people with the joy it brings me.
But today is April 14th (Aargh!!) and the first 2018 tax filing is tomorrow, or if you live in Massachusetts or Maine, Wednesday, April 17; and I am thinking about the reason you haven’t filed.
Could be any number of things. Could be you just don’t wanna. Could be you want to take a bit more time to review your information. Could be you need a new accountant.
First, file an extension and breathe a bit.
Ok. Now let’s take a look at what’s up. Are you not ready because your information hasn’t been completed for 2018? That’s what is often the case with many of the business owner’s and solo entrepreneurs I speak with. It’s not that they don’t want to be ready. Every year they plan on getting everything in place so they can have this task checked off before the deadline, it’s just that they don’t have the time to take care of their day-to-day administrative tasks.
So, I am about to beat that drum again. Acknowledge the need and hire help. I know it doesn’t feel like it but it doesn’t mean that you lose control of your business.
The secret is to hire a person you trust to take care of the day-to-day administrative needs. And by day-to-day, I don’t mean that you need to hire a full-time or even every-week part-time employee. If your business is crazy busy and generates lots of paperwork, or you want to have someone available to answer phones then yes… hire someone for daily assistance. That doesn’t mean they have to be full-time, though.
First, figure out everything you need to be done but can no longer handle yourself during your normal business hours. Part of the consideration for bringing on staff (employee or a freelance worker like me) should be that you will get your evenings and weekends back. That would be lovely, yes?
So, you have the list. No? Can’t think of everything that gets done because it is always on the fly?
Let me get you started. In no particular order…
– Answering voice messages and returning phone calls
– Reviewing and replying to email requests for services
– Reviewing and replying to client emails
– Reviewing email for vendor bills
– Paying bills
– Invoicing clients
– Tracking outstanding monies due to you
– Ordering supplies for your services
– Ordering office supplies
– Reviewing time sheets and handling payroll
– Ordering uniforms
That’s quite a list. Did you know you were taking care of all of that… and probably more things unique to your business? Of course you did, because you have been doing it all.
So let’s take a look again. What can you hand off without losing control of your business? How about almost everything.
It’s all about systems, training and hiring the right person.
Sounds like I think it’s easy but I can assure you that I know it is not. And depending on where you are in your business, it can take time to get it right. But you can get it right and once that happens, you can comfortably take your business where you want it to go and, get more of your personal life back.
How do you do it? One step at a time.
I know… How cliché is that? It is, however true. It can take time but each step will get you closer to your goal.
Don’t know where to start? Drop me a note and we can chat. I love helping businesses grow and owner’s keep their joy.
Just a thought.