Outsourcing when you have no cash
Outsourcing is one of the easiest ways we can gain leverage. Finding the right people to edit my videos, run my website, and take care of my admin work has been a complete game-changer.
What people don’t understand about outsourcing is that in the long-run it makes you a tonne of money. This is because proper delegation frees up time so you can focus on the work that really adds value to the world, not mundane tasks that anyone can do.
I published an article this week
on how anyone can get started with outsourcing. We talk through how to identify work that someone else could do, how to find a freelancer, and how to put processes in place so that you can’t fail.
Here’s an extract from article.
Identifying and prioritising tasks to delegate
You want to be looking for the lowest leverage, highest effort tasks to delegate. You can check out this article on leverage
if you want to find out more about that. Generally when we speak about low leverage work we mean work that a tonne of people can do. If lots of people can do it, it’s low leverage, if it’s low leverage it’s cheap. That’s the beauty of supply and demand.
Let’s look at the example of someone running an Instagram shop selling clothing. To be successful these clothes need to stand out. The design needs to be on point, and to market them properly you need a powerful brand message. Imagine the day-to-day running of the business is made up of the below tasks.
1. Create posts for social media
2. Come up with ideas for t-shirts
3. Screen-print the t-shirts
4. Package and ship the t-shirts
5. Deal with customer support requests
Arguably, only two of these tasks are really high leverage, the creating of the posts for social media, and coming up with the ideas for new t-shirts. The other tasks could really be done by anyone with basic training, as long as they are executed to a high quality.
When it comes to prioritising the other tasks, think in terms of return on investment. Which task can be outsourced for the lowest $/hour? This should be a pretty simple calculation. If customer support requests take up an hour of your time a day and can be outsourced for $10, but packaging takes up 2 hours of your day but will cost $30 to outsource, sort out the customer support requests first.
Is productivity over-rated?
The one that resonated with me the most was his critique on productivity.
I think most desires for “productivity” are misguided. They’re optimizing the wrong part of the work stack because it’s the easiest area to focus.
As a simple example, working 10x faster breaking rocks is not going to give you Elon-level world impact. The things you choose to focus on and work on set the ceiling for where your productivity can get you. Running faster in the wrong direction won’t get you where you want to be.
Even some of the desires for greater personal leverage could be misguided if you’re creating more output on a process that isn’t truly meaningful or impactful for you. It’s so important to be very deliberate about what we spend our energy on.