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Team Team Team: The importance of not doing it all yourself



We all need somebody to lean on

The story of both my personal and professional life is littered with mistakes made, balls dropped, deadlines missed, and, most importantly, lessons learned. The most prevalent of these lessons is: no matter how talented and self-efficient I may think I am, I can never do everything by myself. It's a simple fact ... none of us can. Even the greatest, most skilled individual within a particular industry or trade needs some form of collaboration from time to time, to get them to the finish line. A Scottie Pippen, or an Alfred; Steve Wozniak, or Sheila E. -- regardless of who you are and what you can do, you need someone to share the load with.

Time: An ever-so precious commodity

As a small business owner, your time is easily the most precious commodity that you have, Leveraging that time, and offloading tasks to your staff or outsourcing them to vendors, can and will preserve that ever-so precious commodity to be used on projects and tasks of greater importance. And if you have a question, whether you own a business, are an employee at that business, or just someone who is stuck, ask someone. Sometimes, we let our pride get in the way of simply asking someone a question because we think it makes us look stupid. In fact, the opposite is true. People who ask concise, relevant questions are often the ones most associated with high intelligence. Pierre Marc Gaston put it best when he wrote, "It is easier to judge the mind of a man by his questions rather than his answers." 

The Lone Wolf mentality 

Well Blake, what if I'm a self-employed, penny-pinching lone wolf? That's great - that means you find yourself among the vast majority of business owners, but that doesn't mean you have to do everything by yourself, and furthermore, you probably are wasting time and, consequentially, money trying to. Spending too much time on invoicing or bookkeeping? Contract a family friend to tidy it all up once a month. Having a difficult time getting the right look or feel on your newsletter? Call a local design school and hire a student to help.

Use the people around you and succeed

Use the people around you, work smarter and better as a team. Don't ever be afraid to ask for help. I know in my experience, I've had several opportunities to do just that, that I decided not to take and it has made the task or project I was undertaking that much harder, and, as often as not, that sort of mentality led to failure.


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