Small business owners wear all the hats required by their operation, and for many, that’s part of the fun. Who wants to do the same thing every day? Besides, you’re a holistic thinker, you like to keep your attention on the big picture, your finger in every pie.
Because you’re excited about your product or service, and even more importantly because you’re a wide-angle thinker, your business is doing okay, maybe even well. If you’ve been at it a while, perhaps you really take pride in its smooth operation; and when you hit any bumps in the road, you’re ready for them. You may even venture to say that you feel fulfilled, connected, and satisfied.
On the other hand, perhaps you’re just starting a new business, or you’ve been struggling to get one off the ground, or maybe you’ve been noticing declining sales, not to mention your own declining energy in a business you’ve had for some time. For just about everyone, there comes a point in your career when you’re working hard at something and you’re dedicated to it, but somehow you do not feel fulfilled, connected, or satisfied.
You could use some support. How ridiculous that this is not everyone’s first thought when personally perplexed in any way. We carry some ancient taboo against asking for help. Rather than seek assistance, people will assume tons of guilt over the fear that they’re not capable of doing it all themselves. If this describes you, here’s a news flash for you: No Man or Woman is an Island! You may feel like one, but that’s an illusion.
Finally – or better, right in synch with your business plan timeline – you decide to get that support. You think about hiring employees. The logic appears to be seamless: I will pay people to be at my place of business and do work for me. This will reduce my work load and support the health and growth of my business.
This system has been in place from time immemorial, although there’s always been an inherent flaw. The business owner replaces his/her previous work load with new tasks associated with staff management; and though the return on your hiring investment can benefit your bottom line, is it by a convincing margin?
The problem is that an employee’s self-image differs so widely from the business owner’s that there’s little realistic hope of shared conviction about the business. An employee is supported by you; it is not a situation in which, technically speaking, you are supported by them. Your employees may like you, be respectful and skilled, and fulfill your work needs well, and still not be a support to you beyond the specifics of their job description.
Nor should you, the business owner, expect any more. As one who has endured the rigors of business start-up, you should know that what it takes to own the operation is entirely removed from what it takes to be an employee. Your fundamental motivations and personality types are very different.
Instead of hiring a traditional employee, think about the merits of working with a virtual assistant (VA) for your small business. A VA is a business owner just like you, and understands what it is to be self-employed.
Though many VAs specialize, for the most part a VA is not a coach, or consultant, or therapist. But because you and the VA are collegial small business owners, you may well come to rely on this relationship for the motivational, organizational, and even emotional support it can provide.
A VA accomplishes administrative tasks for you through an independent B2B contract; and if you work over time with one, not only will your work get done professionally, but the VA will likely also become a virtual partner in your business! You can turn to him/her for advice, friendship, and peer feedback almost as you would with an honest-to-goodness partner.
VAs often declare: Your success is my success. VAs encourage a cooperative market, where everyone wins. Go ahead, get online and find a virtual assistant company that looks right for you. The internet connects islands to one another!