May 19, 2014

Don't learn that new skill..

In school, we are measured on how 'good' we are at different subjects.

Math, Geography, Creative Writing, Physics... and if you're not A+ status on these subjects, you get a tutor. 

When I was in school, I sucked at two subjects: Science and Math.

Chemistry and my brain just do NOT go together. In first term, I averaged a 45%. 

So my parents hired a private chemistry tutor. He would visit my house once a week, and help me understand my homework. 

And after many months of tutoring and studying, and toiling away at the periodic table, I wrote the big mid-term exam.

And I achieved a whopping 50%. 

Ok, so I passed. Right?

But think about it. All of that effort, time and money and I was only able to improve my grade 5%. And also, I'm not totally sure that my Science teacher didn't just boost my grade because he felt sorry for me, knowing that I had a tutor and all that jazz.

What's the lesson?

Some people just aren't GOOD at certain things AND that's okay.

Creative Writing, English, Environmental Studies and Economics were my strengths. 90%+ in those classes with little effort.

We're taught in school that we should be better at things we're not built to do. 

And the same thing happens in business. We often think that taking a creative writing course will improve our copywriting, or an online marketing course will make us better marketers, but what if we flipped our perspective.

Time is a precious commodity.

In a product-based business, we never have enough time.

Whether we're trying to figure out our books, or shipping packages, or managing customer service inquiries, or social media, or product development or inventory counts -- we're busy. 

So, why take the time to learn a new skill? Especially if it's one we don't like?

Hire it out!

I'm not saying don't take the time to learn something you're genuinely interested in (I'm taking a coding class next weekend!), what I'm talking about is NOT forcing ourselves to do/learn something we have NO interest in doing.

For me, that's accounting and bookkeeping.

I know a little bit about how to manage expenses (the basics) but heck, I suck at math (see above) so I've either hired out or automated these processes in my business.

A second one for me is photo re-touching. Believe it or not, I used to do this myself. Now, I use to hire a professional who can do this way faster, and way better.

It's always a balance. Cost over time. Quality over Cost. Time over Quality. 

There's a metric called ROTI. Return on Time Invested. A measure of the efficiency of your time invested in an activity.

We can't hire everything out (especially at the beginning) but taking a critical look at your to-do's and seeing where you can optimize might just make you just that more efficient by freeing up your time for revenue generating activities.

So, now it's your turn. What's ONE thing you can hire out in the next few weeks? Let me know in the comments below!


Wishing you blissful retail!

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