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Why Are You Still Doing Everything Yourself?

by Missy Ward in Affiliate Marketing   25 Comments

When you first start a business, money is tight and you might feel that you need to do everything yourself – even things you’re lousy at or frankly, just despise doing.

From handling all your own designing, writing sales copy, managing client relations, managing the sales process, fulfilling products or services, running office errands, bookkeeping and more, you can quickly become overwhelmed and burnt out.

But most importantly, with only so many hours in the given entrepreneurial day, you will be hard-pressed to achieve the success you dreamed of when starting your business if you get bogged down in all of the details.

That was me 10 years ago when it came to designing my affiliate sites. Not only were they visual train wrecks, but much to my dismay, they were taking way too much time to have them turn out that way.

So what did I do? I went out and purchased a different design program and spent many hours learning how to use it, but it didn’t help my sites look any better. I then paid someone for three hours of their time to tutor me until I knew that program inside and out.

After countless hours of wasted time and a bunch of wasted money, I realized that no design program was going to help me. I was just an awful designer and I hated every minute I spent doing anything design-related.

At that point, I realized that I was thinking too small and could either spin my wheels in hopes of getting ahead, or hire a good designer that would enable me to concentrate on the things that I do best.

My biggest fear was that I was going to break the bank by hiring someone to help me. But, I quickly found a few designers through recommendations that helped with site skeletons that I could build upon, that didn’t cost an arm and a leg.

Today, there are many more cost-effective options to find folks to help you with design, coding, writing, SEO, social media marketing and more with sites such as Fiverr.com, Goferr.com, Elance.com and Odesk.com, to name a few.

You first need to figure out what you can delegate, so I recommend taking a week and writing down everything that you do. I mean everything!

Then, at the end of the week, take that list divide it into two categories:

1. What *you* could only do, and
2. What someone else is capable of doing for you

Once you find assistants who can handle what you are able to delegate, and probably do it better than you, you’ll be able to concentrate on the brainstorms and the revenue-generating projects that will help you succeed.

What are you doing that you shouldn't be doing right now?

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Missy Ward

Co-Founder & President at Affiliate Summit, Inc.
Missy Ward has been in affiliate marketing since 1999. She is the Co-Founder of Affiliate Summit, FeedFront Magazine, GeekCast.fm, itsaWAHMthing.com; the Co-Publisher of Revenews.com, Founder of AffiliateMarketersGiveBack.com and manages many of her own affiliate sites. If she's not making money through affiliate links on the post you're currently reading, it's an oversight on her part and it will be corrected soon.

Comment & Add Your Voice

1 Nick Loper December 1, 2011 at 5:47 pm

Hi Missy, I just read this article in FeedFront, and wanted to see if there was an online version. I’ve had a couple VAs, the first with a company called TimeSvr, which actually worked out really well, and the one I have now I found on Elance, also very positive so far. Like most other solopreneurs, the hardest part was letting go… apparently I have control issues too!

But even though I’m spending some money, I’m a much happier person because of the time I now have freed up.

Reply

2 Missy Ward December 2, 2011 at 4:24 pm

Hey Nick,

Thanks for the introduction to TimeSvr. That’s not one that I’m familiar with, so I appreciate the info!

3 Jim Kukral October 21, 2011 at 2:32 pm

I’d be totally open to sharing a VA with someone. Things I need done most.

1. Researching and contacting niche industry experts to set up interviews for my books. That’s a lot of time I don’t have.

Actually, I have someone already lined up if someone wants to share with me, contact me.

Reply

4 Vinny O'Hare October 21, 2011 at 2:25 pm

I have been outsourcing my content writing for years now. I realized a long time ago that writing is time consuming and if it is in an unfamiliar niche my writing could be better.

You need to let go of the stuff that you are not good at. I use Elance often for that.

Reply

5 Missy Ward October 21, 2011 at 2:31 pm

I love writing — I just so easily distracted by squirrels that I have about 15, half-written blog posts 🙂 Maybe elance will finish them up for me, lol!

6 Sharon October 27, 2011 at 7:57 am

Thanks for this article Missy! It’s so helpful to read everyone’s comments and suggestions as well.

7 Rae October 21, 2011 at 2:18 pm

I have several full time employees at this point, but I *STILL* find myself doing things that I don’t need to do. I have serious control issues HAHA.

I think a big thing I had to get past in the beginning was that I thought “it’s easier to do it myself than explain it to someone else” … but what I failed to realize with that mentality was that if I was doing it over and over, it would be worth explaining it to someone – and then letting THEM do it.

I’m also a perfectionist… that’s something else I’m still struggling to get past LOL.

Reply

8 Missy Ward October 21, 2011 at 2:30 pm

Really? You’re a perfectionist??? I would not have gotten that from you 😉

9 Stephanie Robbins October 21, 2011 at 12:42 pm

thanks for this timely post. I just bit the bullet and hired a part time assistant. Still feel a bit tight in the stomach about being responsible for someone else. However it is just like you said, I am going to be stagnant without it. Thanks for the little boost I needed this morning.

Reply

10 Missy Ward October 21, 2011 at 1:01 pm

Glad I could help Stephanie. Quite frankly, there are times (pretty much every day) where I find myself still doing things that I shouldn’t be. I’m a work in progress 🙂 But at least I’m doing better at recognizing that I’m doing it and tuck it onto the list of things I should let my VA do!

11 Patrick Allmond October 21, 2011 at 12:03 pm

Thanks Missy for the post and thanks Jim for the tip. Just this very morning I forwarded some changes to a VA for the first time that I would normally do. I have to admit that I am nervous. But eventually I think I’ll get over it as the trust increases. I’d really like to work with 123employee. It is a company of VAs so as I need to increase to 2, 3, etc (fingers crossed) they will all be working together.

Reply

12 Missy Ward October 21, 2011 at 12:07 pm

Hey Patrick,

Let me know how 123employee goes. You’re the first person I know using them, so any feedback would be appreciated.

13 Joe Sousa October 21, 2011 at 11:50 am

Awesome article Missy. I think this is one of the biggest things holding me back right now. I have trouble letting go of some of the aspects of sitebuilding and want to keep too much control. I need to get a much better handle on what I am good at, what I like to do, and what I can let someone else do for me.

Reply

14 Missy Ward October 21, 2011 at 12:05 pm

That was the hardest part for me… letting go. I’m a total control-freak!

But once I sat down and wrote up everything I do — including the 5 minutes on twitter here, 10 minutes on facebook there, running to the po box, opening up mail, etc. — I realized how unproductive I was being with the stuff that actually was paying the bills!

15 Patrick Allmond October 21, 2011 at 12:29 pm

Joe would you ever consider going in 50/50 on a VA? Read the comments above from Missy.

16 Jim Kukral October 21, 2011 at 11:40 am

Yeah, I finally got smart and hired a VA who can do all the wordpress/graphic stuff I need and I’m cruising now. Why did I wait? Next up a content person. Highly recommend Rick Ramos’s company at TeamLauncher.com.

Reply

17 Missy Ward October 21, 2011 at 12:01 pm

It definitely helped when Rae Hoffman and I hired our VA, Neil. I didn’t need someone full-time and at that point, neither did Rae. So now, we have joint custody of him 😉

18 Patrick Allmond October 21, 2011 at 12:10 pm

Oh not using them yet 🙂 Sorry – I misled. I am using someone from oDesk right now. A single VA from 123employee costs $347 a month for 10 hours a week. They say there is a $200 sign up fee, but I get promotions waiving that all of the time. I like the fact that you also get to interview VAs until you find one you like and that has the skillset you need. I am waiting for the right cashflow to afford one. I am very close – maybe within the next two weeks. I’ll definitely keep you posted MW.

Reply

19 Missy Ward October 21, 2011 at 12:16 pm

Do you happen to know anyone else looking for a VA, so that you can split one like Rae and I do? It’s actually working out really well for us.

Reply

20 Patrick Allmond October 21, 2011 at 12:29 pm

It looks like Joe Sousa in the comments might be. I had not even thought of that. You are one smart lady. Rae too – we had a disagreement on twitter once but I still respect her and her knowledge.

Reply

21 Missy Ward October 21, 2011 at 12:37 pm

I immediately went to buy shareava.com or shareavirtualassistant.com but alas… they were taken 😉

Reply

22 Patrick Allmond October 21, 2011 at 2:17 pm

It looks like ShareYourVA.com is available 🙂

Reply

23 Missy Ward October 21, 2011 at 2:39 pm

Someone smart should do something with that 😉

Reply

24 Jim Kukral October 21, 2011 at 2:43 pm

Oh geez, you need a VA to chase all these butterflies! 🙂

Reply

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