This week the media has been full of stories and quotes from Steve Jobs, former CEO of Apple who sadly passed away a few days ago. He is someone who clearly changed the world of technology with his entrepreneurial spirit and as such is one of the most iconic business people of our time. And he certainly deserves every bit of praise he is receiving.

But…….he wasn’t Superman! He couldn’t do all of this alone!

You see, behind every iconic business leader is a team. Or at least there should be in order to run a successful business. Steve Jobs was the vocal spokesperson we all knew of. He was the one who stood at the front of the room at launch events to showcase the latest piece of Apple heaven and he was the person lauded as the genius when they subsequently couldn’t keep up with demand!

However, behind him were lots of other people who supported him doing what he did best by doing what they do best.

Whatever size business you are the iconic leader of, you will never be super successful if every single aspect of it relies on you being involved. One of the very first lessons I learned from being a member of Nigel Botterill’s Entrepreneurs Circle was the power of outsourcing. A year later I am still surprised when I meet business owners who are so bogged down by working in their business that they are turning new clients away and have no time left for themselves let alone any spare time to spend on marketing or planning.

In order to redress the balance, the first thing every business owner needs to do is make a list of every single task performed during a typical working day. Let’s think about yours;

  • If you find you’re constantly being interrupted by your telephone ringing, consider outsourcing to a call answering service. They answer the calls and notify you by email. You can schedule a time slot to return calls.
  • Spending too much time doing admin tasks – Virtual Assistants (VA) are there to take the admin burden away from you. What admin can you outsource to free up time?
  • Is your bookkeeping a constant source of frustration or simply taking too long? Freelance Bookkeepers can take care of inputting data as well as preparing your accounts for submission.
  • Too many clients, not enough time? Have you considered outsourcing to a trusted Freelancer who has the skills to do the job but not your expertise or experience?
  • Bogged down with blogging? Freelance Writers can research and write blogs for you and even upload/optimise them on your behalf.

You know when you think about it properly, there are a lot of tasks you can outsource and in doing so you’ll free up a lot of your time which can be used much more profitably. Your most valuable asset is your time and spending it doing the stuff you don’t need to do is akin to flushing profits down the toilet!

You’re probably wondering why I’m writing about outsourcing when my business is social media? What does any of this have to do with social media?

A lot actually! When you make a decision to outsource you need to firstly meet a business who shares your values and secondly you need to trust them to meet your standards. When you’re really busy, it is often difficult to get out and about to a lot of networking events and unless you already know of people who can help, where do you find Freelancers to outsource to?

Social media of course! I’ve built a solid team around me and with one exception I first encountered then got to know my chosen team on social media. It isn’t just me either – I have clients who know me only from social media and have hired me to work for them yet we’ve never physically met!

Social networking allows you to get to know, trust and build relationships with not only your targeted prospects but also collaborators. You can build up a view of people from how they interact on social media and use your judgement on whether they are someone you could do business with?

Think about what you do every day and think about your social network. Are there any opportunities there for you to regain your valuable time by outsourcing some of your workload to your online network?

If you would like introductions to the people I work with then just ask. I haven’t listed individuals here because this blog isn’t about promoting their businesses, it’s about empowering yours.

So what did you do today? More importa