I’ll touch a fish so we can get a good photo after a long day out in the Gulf, but I definitely prefer painting them.
Every summer my little family and I head to the beach. Hardly a summer weekend is not spent fishing. Each beautiful and calm day that goes “un-fished” is wasted, according to my husband. I’ve always been more of a spectator when it comes to salt water activities; my in-laws, however, mean business. I’ve witnessed my husband spend hours wiring new lures and preparing outriggers (do I sound like I know what I’m talking about yet? LOL) just for a single trip out on the water. Then he has to have good bait, and he has to check the weather. Once he’s fully prepared, he has to make sure that he will have his fishing crew. One person will predominately drive the boat, while another rigs the line. And he can’t set sale without his gaff man—more importantly, he can’t set sail with a terrible one.
While my passion may not be out on the sea, I definitely can relate. My business requires all of the working parts and a team of highly dedicated and talented individuals. Just as my husband never goes out fishing alone, I do not operate my business alone. If you go out fishing alone, the number of fish you will bring home is already limited and your chance of error is so much greater. When you’re running a business alone, you see similar outcomes. I used to think that I couldn’t afford outsourcing because it was too expensive, so I would handle every aspect of my business on my own. One day I spent seven hours framing, packing, and shipping artwork. Seven. Hours. Looking back I could kick myself for lacking the confidence to know I could make more money in seven hours painting than the $100 I could have paid someone to do the packing and shipping for me.
The truth is that we tend to multitask because we refuse to delegate any of the necessary tasks to run our businesses, so we end up just being mediocre in everything we’re trying to do. What happens when we delegate all of the things we are not so good at and hand them over to highly capable professionals? We get more time to do the things we are good at, which is why we started our own business in the first place.
I didn’t cross over to the outsourcing side willingly. I even used to handle all of my own finances for my business as well, until my brother-in-law insisted on stepping in. He is studying accounting and helped me understand exactly what my expenses are, exactly what my income is, and what my potential income could be. In a nutshell what he gave me was more time to paint. I was spending an entire day just on invoices and billing—that’s eight hours of painting that I was missing out on!
After that I started to trust this system and started handing out more tasks to other people. I now use multiple software programs to help me with email marketing, advertising on social media, and additional financial needs. I started painting more and more, sometimes building entire collections in a single week. I was generating more inventory, which in turn generated more income!
I would most likely still be trying to juggle all of these things if my brother-in-law hadn’t offered to help and I hadn’t let him. Take a look at your own business and be honest with yourself about your strengths and weaknesses. Where are you succeeding? Where could you use a little help? Delegate your weak spots to someone else who can fill that need for you, and let go.
In the end you will spend more time doing what you love and the work will reward you for it.
Written by Kimberly Zukley
Edited by Virginia Kinnier