Today’s small business owner faces challenges unknown in former times. It is no longer the competition of other companies within the same geographical area. The company must now compete with the rest of the world. It’s not enough to do everything yourself and dabble in a little marketing every now and then.
That was the business model that dates back to the good old days of store merchants. In today’s world, a business owner must focus all of his energies on growing the business, both in financial health and in sales. In your grandparents’ days, people made their own soap. Yes, they were being thrifty and doing essential tasks, but today we don’t have the time or desire, it’s better to buy the soap. Doing your own payroll every week or two is a task that adds nothing to the growth of your business. It’s a chore, not unlike gardening, cleaning, or machine maintenance. These are all the things that you could do it yourself but the question is, should you?
An important difference is the sensitivity of the information involved. But how many times do problems arise when pay rates are leaked, or when you want to give a raise but don’t want the payroll clerk to know? About 28% of you end up doing payroll. That’s not being productive with your time. You also want it done right, so do it yourself. This is not the way to grow, doing everything yourself.
The task of paying employees and paying taxes is not add any value what your customer buys from you, or the experience your customer has in dealing with your company. Small businesses become large companies when the owner learns to delegate, when he starts working on his business, not his business, when he hires talented people who perform specialized tasks for him.
He (I say “he” because 78% of business owners are male, although I think this is changing rapidly) works on how the company delivers something valuable to the customer, works on the marketing message that the world sees, works on the systems that make the business work in the eyes of its customers.
The growing business owner doesn’t spend his time on mundane tasks that customers don’t care about. Your client doesn’t care if he spends a couple of hours every Friday doing his own payroll. Look, just get the facts about the different ways to get the job done in the least amount of time.
I believe that small businesses are the backbone of our great nation. It is people and their energy that make our economy work, although they do not receive any attention. It’s where all the growth comes from, it’s where the action is, it’s where the work gets done, but don’t try to do everything yourself.