Yet there is a strong case for actually doing things yourself, as discussed in an interview between Michael Hyatt (MichaelHyatt.com) and Crystal Paine (MoneySavingMom.com) as part of Hyatt’s Platform University. This topic was only a small part of a much larger interview, but the points resonated with me so much that I wanted to share them.
1. You understand how to do it
Having at least a basic understanding of what’s involved in a task helps you manage it better. If you have no idea how to do something, you really have no way to determine if your employees or contractors are doing the task well. As Paine says, “If you don’t know how to do it well, you’re not going to delegate it well.”
For example, it probably isn’t wise to just hire someone to handle your social media without managing it yourself some first. If you’ve never even dabbled in it, then you won’t know if they are doing a good job; you don’t know what a “win” looks like. But if you know how it’s done, then you’ll know if it’s being done well.
2. You understand the value
If you’ve never done a task, you may not realize how much value someone else is providing. In the words of Hyatt, “You don’t really know what to pay for it. You don’t really know what it’s worth, or what it costs, or what the effort is.”
If you hire a bookkeeper but you have never tried keeping your own books, you may resent having to pay the bookkeeper’s rates. On the other hand, if you know that you have to spend a couple of hours per week on your business’s books, and your bookkeeper is doing the same job in less than 30 minutes, then you realize how much value she is providing. By paying her for a half hour of work, you have an extra two hours to do your genius work. Now that’s value!
3. You appreciate the quality
If you’ve never tried to do something, you really don’t know how well someone else is doing it. After managing her first book launch entirely by herself, Paine was able to really appreciate the person she hired to manage a subsequent launch. She told him, “I get what you’re doing and how hard this is because I did it the first time myself. Thank you so much!”
4. It allows you to grow your income ahead of your expenses
While it may be inefficient to do things yourself, it can lower your expenses. When you do everything yourself, you’ll grow your business more slowly, but you’ll be able to verify the validity of your business ideas before investing too deeply.
I’m not saying that you shouldn’t ask for help, especially when learning new things. Insisting on doing things yourself when you have no idea how to do them is usually a mistake. I’ll talk more about that in my next post.
But as outlined above, gaining competency by doing things yourself can really help you in the long run. Are you gaining competency by doing things yourself? Could you benefit from learning how to do them better? Please post a comment and let me know!
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