Do it yourself or hire a professional? This is a question many entrepreneurs ponder.
Have you ever been tempted to do a job yourself (even if it’s something you’re not highly skilled at?). If so, you’re not alone.
Many entrepreneurs, especially start-up ones, are tempted to wear many hats and do all sorts of tasks themselves rather than hiring professionals to do the work. It’s either because they’re reluctant to delegate or they’re looking to minimize costs.
While it’s sometimes easier to do things yourself to eliminate the need for training and relaying to someone your exact specifications, it may end up being counterproductive.
In this article, let’s talk about the pros and cons of doing it yourself versus hiring a professional; regardless of what task it is. We’re also going to discuss when to do it yourself and when not to.
When to Hire Professionals
Here are a few signs that it’s better to hire professionals rather than do it yourself:
If the job is repetitive
If it’s a repetitive job, it’s better to take the time to fill in the position. The time you invest in looking for the right person or agency will be worth it, knowing that you are to delegate the job on an ongoing basis. You’ll save a great deal of time once the ongoing task is successfully delegated.
When other people have the skills required
If there are many professionals who can pull off the job as well or even better than you do, it’s better to choose delegation.
When the task is an opportunity for another team member to grow
If a task that you used to do yourself is a task that can be an opportunity for a key member to grow, it’s best to give them a chance and slowly mold and equip them to handle key responsibilities they are ready to take on.
When it’s a task that you hate doing
You won’t be as productive if it’s a task you don’t enjoy doing. For better results, find people who enjoy doing it and just be willing to allocate budget for it.
For you to have a clearer guide as to what’s the best course of action, take a look at the following pros and cons of letting the experts get the job done.
Pros of Hiring a Professional
There are actually quite a few pros of hiring a professional. Here’s just a few:
1. It Saves Time
You can save lots of time if you just let freelancers or agencies do the work. Especially if the job does not match your skill set, rather than trying to learn the skill which can take a long time, just focus on your strengths instead and let the professionals handle the job.
Remember that your most valuable resource is your time, and you can drive maximum results if you work on the big picture and spend your precious time strategizing your company’s direction and making things better for the whole organization.
2. You can Expect Professional Results
Although it sometimes takes time to find the best contractor to outsource the job to, sooner or later, you will find the best fit. Once you find the right person or team for the job, you’ll now have your go-to expert that can reliably do similar jobs in the future. They’ll be an extension of your company, and they’ll bring in a lot of value.
3. You can Get Better at Delegation
Especially if you are not yet comfortable or effective at delegating, this is your best opportunity to practice this very important skill. Yes, delegation is a skill, and without it, expect chaos and burnout in your professional life. Accept the fact that you can’t do it all by yourself. You need an awesome team backing you up, and the best time to go and look for them is now.
Cons of Hiring a Professional
Most entrepreneurs have a stigma about what they shouldn’t hire. Sometimes, these cons can have some accuracy, and other times, they’re a bit miscalculated. Here are the cons to keep in mind when hiring professionals:
1. It can be Costly
As mentioned, it might be tempting to just learn the skill instead of trying to jump straight into having the work delegated. The cost may be a factor, but in my personal experience, I try to invest time or money in learning the skill but not for the sake of mastering it, but for the sake of getting myself acquainted with how it works, (including the basic process involved as well as the jargon)s.
I still delegate the job to the right freelancer or agency, but instead of blindly doing so, I feel equipped knowing that I have some basic knowledge as to the scope and the process involved.
Delegation can be costly up front, but it’s worth it knowing that your precious time is freed up, and the project is in the right hands.
2. It Requires effective communication
This is one of the common challenges people face when delegating work. The point is, delegation is not just about telling a professional to deliver ‘something’. While it’s their job to deliver the services you need, it’s your job to let them know your exact needs and specifications.
You can’t expect them to do it right the first time, if your initial instructions are vague or inaccurate. In order not to waste your time and their time, it’s best to be as specific as possible to equip them with the information they need to execute the job to your satisfaction.
While certain tweaks and revisions may be required, they won’t be as many if you take the time to be more specific from the very beginning. Specifying instructions may be a bit time-consuming and may require effective communication, but the time that you save because of hiring the support you need can have a huge impact on your bottom line.
Your job is to work on high-quality tasks, tasks that actually move the needle for your brand. The goal is to only do the things that only you can do and delegate the rest.
3. It Requires giving up control and learning to trust other people’s skills
Although we all know that delegation is crucial to the company’s success, some supervisors or managers find it challenging, especially if they think that no one else can do the job better than them. Trusting other’s capabilities and being patient in training them to be effective at their job can take time and require lots of patience.
- Gusto – HR Software to help you with hiring and paying people
- Quickbooks – Accounting software to help you manage your expenses and cashflow
- Hubstaff – Timekeeping software to help you study your time and maximize your efficiency
When to Do It Yourself
There are certain tasks that you may be compelled to take on yourself. Here are few good reasons to do the job yourself:
1. If you don’t have enough time to delegate the task
If the task is urgent and a one-off job, then it might just take more time to explain to someone what to do than just to do the job yourself. In that case, it makes sense to just go ahead and do it yourself. However, if it’s a recurring project and it’s a task that offers meaningful development to a subordinate, it’s better to find time delegating the task and training the workforce.
2. If no one can do it but you
If it’s an intricate task that you have intimate knowledge of, it may be difficult to delegate it. You’ll know if you really are the best person for the job or if you want it done in a very specific way only you can pull off, and if that’s the case, you can skip delegating it.
3. If It’s a job you truly enjoy
Do more of what you love, but make sure that you (as an entrepreneur) learn to love only the high-quality tasks that can generate the biggest results for your organization. If there are tasks that you should love and spend most of your time on, they should be the tasks that can have a huge impact on your bottom line.
1. As much as possible, avoid loving the small tasks that other people can easily do, and love the hard tasks that only you can do—including planning the future of the company and setting the direction your team should head towards.
Here are some pros and cons of doing the task yourself
May be time-saving
If the task is something that only you can do for now or if it’s complicated to delegate, you may do it faster and more effectively than others. Instead of wasting time explaining how it should be done, it’s best to just do it yourself, especially if the task is non-recurring.
Since the delegation doesn’t require outsourcing or hiring, you don’t have to spend for professional fees. However, do take note that doing it yourself is also costly. Considering that your own time has its own inherent value, you can’t consider your time as “free”.
Instead, your time is actually very valuable to the business’ growth considering that you’re casting the vision. Thus, only personally do the things that can effectively form the big picture and skip the small stuff.
Despite what you might think, there really are cons of doing things yourself (even if you think you’re good at them).
It’s Not as cost-effective as you imagine
As mentioned, your time is your most valuable resource and time spent doing the non-essential stuff could be very costly. You might think that because you’re good at something, that you save money by doing it, but that’s not always the case.
Let’s say you’re someone who’s multi-talented. Maybe you can clean very well, but you’re also a good lawyer.
If you make the most money from your law firm, but you’re spending lots of time cleaning, then you could be losing money. Instead, if you spend your time doing the actual work that matters, the rewards and impact could be much more immense.
Tasks That You Should Try Not to Delegate
Although delegation is important, there are certain tasks that may end up going haywire if delegated. These crucial tasks should ideally be kept on your to-do list:
When it comes to the important matters that relate to the direction or overall function of the company, the person who calls the shots should be you.
Letting someone else dictate the vision of your company doesn’t make sense. Your organization is a reflection of who you are. If you are serious about your business, you should take charge of the big picture and never think about just letting someone else choose where the company should head.
Especially if the transformational change is large-scale, the leader should handle the transition. You will risk lowering company morale if you don’t.
Choosing who to hire is one of the most important jobs of a leader. You don’t have to handle the whole HR process, but you should at least have a strong pulse on interviews and other related hiring phases. You also need to join in when making the final decision as to who to hire.
Onboarding or training Processes
Make time for meeting new employees. It will build efficacy, boost engagement, and increase morale.
Praise and Recognition
Make sure that you personally acknowledge good work whenever people perform well. Acknowledging a job well done helps your team to feel appreciated. It’s the least you can do for having experienced great performance and company loyalty.
Discipline and termination
The leader should be the one to handle disciplinary interventions or dismissals.
Crucial Activities to new talent
If there’s a new or untested talent, you need to monitor the performance closely, especially if the job is crucial and not completing it thoroughly could mean huge risks for the company.
Setting a good example for fostering values and building culture
- Set the bar
- Practice what you preach
- You can’t expect high performance if you yourself are modeling lousy work ethics.
- You need to set the tone and set it right
If there’s a huge crisis that the staff cannot handle, the one to put out the fire should be the leader. Especially if there’s no established protocol for such crisis yet, it’s better to take charge to manage the crisis effectively.
Have you ever seen a television segment that seemed like it misrepresented someone? Celebrities like Britney Spears can attest to the fact that you should be involved in public relations (even if you’re not a superstar).
For Britney Spears, she was an international icon, then she had a period where she was on drugs, and as a result experienced lots of ridicule. I’m sure she would say that lots of what we could find on television (or even on Google) is inaccurate.
Many celebrities and businesses experience misrepresentation when they’re not involved enough in their public relations process.
As a result, it’s advisable to stay involved.
You can delegate the secondary tasks, but make sure that you’re showing up and stay involved in public PR activities.
It doesn’t matter what task you are looking to delegate. As long as you follow the guide above, you should be good to go. Just remember, your main priority as an entrepreneur—devise the best solutions for your clients and get all the help you need to make sure that client satisfaction, healthy culture setting, and solid revenue are guaranteed.
Tackle only the most important and most high-quality tasks and delegate the rest. If you need help deciding the next best step in business growth, sign up for a free consultation, and let us help.