The LIST - Delegating and Outsourcing is Key

The List - Delgating and Outsourcing is Key

"THE LIST.... keeps me out of the moment.
My best work and business decisions come from being in the moment....and balancing tasks.

When the list starts taking over, I look at where I can delegate and outsource work so my JOY in life and work is not compromised.
That's by design
I'm a designer ..and I've designed my life and business"

Keeping The Balance

Giving up control is not easy.  Most people do not do things to the level to what you may believe is good quality.  However, they want to and a bit of investment on good communication and follow-up help to transition someone into tasks that you may not have time for.

Micro-managing every task simply is not feasible if you plan to develop growth in your business.   You love what you it so you can keep doing it and have the life and business you imagine for yourself.

Delegating tasks is key to your survival and growth as a business person.  How can you afford it?  Many try to do it all because they believe they are making more money....The contrary is true:  Delegating efficiently and effectively will make your business more profitable.

Tasks That Are Easily Delegated

Errands, meeting tradesmen, dropping and picking up items...  They eat up a lot of time and yours is far too valuable to be spending doing these things.  There are plenty of people (mostly women I have used) who want to pick up a few hours a week "doing something" and they are the best at delegating errands and tasks to. They don't want a cubicle, clock-punching job, they are not interested in building a career - they may already have done that.

They simply want to "do something" and I find them to be a terrific and infinite resource.  They have "life experience" so they do not need to be micro-managed.  They "get it" when they need to meet a handy-man at a client's property to install a few things, they shop for items, pick things up and drop things off.  They are flexible and not desiring upward growth.

These women are a huge help to me and I am in a way  a help to them.  They like have "something to do"

Another task to delegate is having someone come in once or twice a week to input data into the bookkeeping system, file documents, create purchase orders, invoices...You have to keep an eye on this at first and throughout - but having someone else handling this will free up your precious valuable time.  

Assistants are a very valuable resource and are eager to learn.  I delegate sourcing, tracking orders, follow ups with trades, job site checks (sometimes if they are well experienced) sampling, floor plans, design boards, and sourcing FF&E (furniture, fixtures and electric)

Keep in mind...they want to eventually launch their own business so it is important to provide them with enough tasks that will help them develop their skills.  

I have had great success too with assistants who have worked with me and then start a family.  They are able to work on digital boards, follow up on tracking, do spreadsheets for project management and all of those tasks that require them to be in front of a home with their baby.  

Outsourcing Tasks

In this "side gig" and digital age, I believe more and more will be outsourced...It already is and this freelancing option gives others the opportunity to earn additional income or perhaps build a business of their own.  Bookkeeping can be done remotely and is a good idea to leave that to the professionals.  Of course, no check writing or deposits/withdrawals are done - I handle that -but they keep the books up-to-date.  That is vital to your running your business and making sure errors are not being made, taxes are being paid on time and business stays busy.  It's important to deliver statements and invoices to clients so they understand where they are at in the project and you continue to collect monies for your work.  If you don't have that up-to-date, it's risky. 

There was a time when I had a large studio office, kitchen, bathroom, and large library with drawing tables, printers, computers....etc.  No more.  I have happily downsized and outsource almost everything OR work remotely.

I have assistants that I work with regularly, but often they are working remotely with me and meet with me once or twice a week.  I have drafts people that I work with , fabrics, samples - pretty much most of it.  I like the ease of not haviing a large studio and yet I can utilize resources that have what I need without paying a large overhead for my business.   

Lastly, you can outsource social media.  I like to keep my hand in it a bit so it remains a connective platform to my audience.  But it could be as easy as reviewing the week's posts with your marketing assistant.  Believe me, its money well spent and again, you are freed up to make money where you are best at it.  Just be mindful of how it's being done.  In the past I hired people that were not as effective as they had promised.  I wasn't really keeping an eye on what they were doing either so I learned a lesson there and spent money that did not provide a good return.

Outsourcing exponentially provides more income and frees me up to do what it is I like to do. It does seem counter-intuitive to hire a person to do a task and spend money but it actually does create more business.   It allows be to keep designing and designing my lifestyle.

I have time for myself and all of my activities, family, friends, my lifestyle.  That takes conscious effort.   I will provide more in-depth tips on how I organize my business so it is both profitable and rewarding...not overwhelming.  

I have not always done things this way but once I discovered the benefit of delegating and outsourcing...I upgraded my lifestyle and am enjoying less stress.


Elizabeth Ribons is a professional interior designer, a creative entrepreneur and has owned and opertated her own design firm for over 20 years.  She launched Better by Design Academy to deliver valuable tips from experts, knowledge from experience, a community and a source to go to for guidance with her online courses.

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