How Many Hats Do You Wear?

Irrespective of what type of business you operate, if you’re a newbie start-up business, you’re juggling many hats. You may be doing everything in the beginning – even if you have a business partner or family to call upon, chances are you’ve resisted recruiting staff as cash flow is tight.

If you operate in the services industry, you might be the technician who provides the service. You may also be the administration assistant, book-keeper, sales manager, receptionist and IT manager. If you sell products, you’re also likely to be the purchasing manager, assembly worker and dispatch clerk!

There are only 24 hours in a day and the demands of each role are tough. It’s a long list. Additionally, most entrepreneurs have family commitments. The daily slog is often unglamorous and your goals of earning mega dollars seems light years away. The strains and stresses impacts health and family life.

You may have to invest significant time and money in learning new skills to help you run your business properly and profitably. You may have enrolled in a business class at your local college and immersing yourself in countless business and entrepreneurship books. You may have a business mentor and a team of professional advisors. You may have to recruit part-time support to do some of the administration work. You might consider enlisting professionals to give you expert advice on matters such as structuring your business, tax advice, and protect your intellectual property.

If you can charge $75 per hour for your service and you can hire someone for $25 per hour to do the work, shouldn’t you hire someone to do this for you? If you waste 10 hours each week on your accounting and book-keeping when a competent professional could do it in a ¼ of the time, wouldn’t it make more sense to get them to do it? Couldn’t you use the spare time more effectively on other important tasks that you’re good at or prefer doing? It’s widely acknowledge that 80% of new businesses fail within 5 years. Poor cash flow and the owner trying to juggle many hats but mastering none are primary reasons for failure.

Many entrepreneurs have no formal training in how to operate a business. They decide to leave employment and work for themselves. For some, many of the skills required come naturally…some will be learned. But successful entrepreneurs know that wearing many hats at the same time can lead to the slippery slope of business failure. They know what to delegate to others and which hats they should wear. How many hats are you wearing?

  1. Joe Parker 8 years ago

    An interesting blog post which made me evaluate how many hats I’m currently wearing. I always find it difficult to say no and know that I’m doing too many things. Your article has given me the push I need.

  2. Yusei Yoshida 8 years ago

    Great topic Mark and thanks for sharing your views.

    I’ve run into this problem myself and lacked some clarity on what to do. I’ve been doing some work that I neither enjoyed doing nor did they match my strengths. I now employ a virtual accountant to prepare my books of account and she saves me 10 hours a week. She’s also much better at dealing with the numbers than me!

  3. Mike 8 years ago

    I agree with yoru view. I now employ a virtual book-keeper for a fraction of what it cost me to hire someone locally. I now have more time and my accounts are prepared every month for me so all I need to do is review them and put my feet up!

    • Author
      Mark Gwilliam 8 years ago

      Thanks Yusei and Mike. Many of our clients who were originally sceptical of outsourcing now say they spend more time with family and on parts of their businesses they enjoy most.

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