It’s hard when you start out in business. To save money, you try to do everything yourself: marketing; social media; graphic design; web development and SEO; business development; you’re the receptionist and (home) office manager; and worst of all, you wind up doing your own invoicing and record-keeping! That’s before you even start doing the work that you’re actually good at (and that doesn’t make you want to gouge your own eyeballs out)!
It makes sense to be careful with your spending during the start-up phase – why invest your uncertain income stream on things you can do yourself?
But it’s also important to plan ahead. What type of business do you want in 12 months’ time? Five years’ time? Do you still want to be doing everything – just because “you can”? Or do you want to be freed up to spend more time on what you’re actually good at – and enjoy?
This is why it’s important to think now about what’s going to be better for you and your business in the long run. Getting your mindset right from the start will be a far better investment than any small savings you can make.
Sure, you can spend thousands (and days) on courses to get more efficient in these areas you’re not good at – but every step takes you away from why you went into business in the first place: to help your clients.
The other side of the coin is that mistakes can be costly – especially when it comes to your financials and compliance obligations. The potential penalties – not to mention lost tax benefits or grants you may be missing out on – can far outweigh the savings you make.
The other risk is burnout. You end up working 24/7 because you’re doing 247 roles.
If you’re constantly juggling 12 balls, chances are you won’t be doing anything well – including your core business. The mental toll of constantly feeling frazzled can wear you down. Importantly, it also stops the creative and problem-solving side of your brain from coming up with valuable solutions for clients (or your own business).
Worst of all: these DIY habits become ingrained. So even though you may end up doing well financially, you still feel the need to hustle constantly and never take the time to enjoy wins along the way.
Remember: you’re not only building a business – you’re creating a lifestyle.
So – what’s REALLY the best use of your time right now?
From time to time, we all need to step back and take a critical look at our business and our lifestyle. Can you see a clear path to the business you originally set out to achieve? If not, you need to make changes.
Getting help with some of the many important tasks involved in running a business – particularly the stuff you struggle with – can provide you with a sense of immediate relief and liberation. Remember – someone loves doing what you hate! (Clients look at me strangely when I tell them about the joy I get from organising chaotic business financials!)
Stepping back and seeking help is a hard concept when first starting out – but I’ve learnt the hard way it’s the key to succeeding in business.
One way to immediately free up your time (and headspace) is to get the help of a BAS agent to manage your financials and compliance obligations. Bookkeeping is no longer just about data entry – many BAS agents offer a full business management solution with a strong focus on healthy financials and squeaky-clean compliance processes.
Yes, you’ll reclaim all those hours spent doing the books. But a BAS agent can also help with important tasks such as setting goals and strategies; working smarter (not harder) by generating cash-saving ideas and improving your overall profitability; implementing processes to streamline your operations (especially around invoicing, payroll and tax time); and providing expert coaching – and holding you accountable – to achieve your goals.
If you’re sick of treading water, a good Business Mentor, Coach or BAS agent might be just the catalyst that you need to take your business to the next level.