One Question to Ask Every ProfessionalNov 08, 2021
Here is a list of professions you will need to at some stage to outsource in your business and the one question you should ask each of them.
We've all been there.
You have an idea, you get excited, but you don't have the skills, knowledge or experience to execute it. So what do you do?
You look for people who have those skills, knowledge and experience to help you. But this is where it gets tricky.
How do you know who is the real deal and who is just going to take your money?
I mean, all they need is to know a little bit more than you and that would be enough to sell themselves as the person you need.
The truth is, myself included, almost every person who has ever been in business has been sold something by someone and have felt as though they received no real value from the purchase - They made the wrong choice.
No matter if you're starting a new business, creating a new product, adding a new service or getting your business organised, here is a list of people you will more than likely need at some point and the one question you should ask each of them to find the right person for your business.
"How would you sell this item? (whatever you choose)?"
I have been burned so many times in the past hiring sales people who go on and on about their record in sales, how much commission they earned etc., but once they were in the job, I found out it was just nonsense. Unless they had incredibly hot leads and a product that sold itself, they did not know the art of sales. They didn't understand the fundamentals of sales - connection, persuasion, listening, follow up, emotion. Basically, they were a dud. When you ask them to sell something to you, a great salesperson should do it with confidence, be excited by the challenge and convince you to buy. If they can't - do not hire!
"Can you show me your last three campaigns you have run for clients and the results they have achieved"
Much like the salesperson, results, not talk, matters. Marketing changes on a dime and these changes means that what worked two months ago, doesn't necessarily work now. Ask them to show you recent results and don't let them bombard you with techno-babble - meaning industry language that is designed to confuse the lay person.
Manager / Operations
"Can you provide me two specific examples of when you have been stressed in the past and how did you overcome it?"
Let's face it, the job of the manager is to take the daily stress away from you and give you the time to focus on the important things. A manager who cannot handle serious stress and pressure, should not be a manager. Ask them this question and they should be able to answer confidently and articulately. If they mumble or struggle to find examples, it is a red flag.
"Specifically, what strategies will you use to minimise my tax?"
An accountant is worth the weight in gold. Let me rephrase that, a good, creative accountant is worth their weight in gold. Too often, I speak to small and medium size business owners who tell me they have an accountant, but don't really know what they do. A good accountant should be working for you and should be coming to you with ideas - not the other way around. Ask them this question and when they answer it, hold them accountable to their answer.
"What will you do that other lawyers can't?"
Much like an accountant, a lawyer needs to be innovative, creative and able to understand the law deeply and apply it appropriately in every situation. Much like an accountant, if you do have in-house counsel or you outsource it, you want them being proactive to work for you, so that problems that may come up, never occur in the first place. The measure of a good lawyer working for you is when you never have any legal problems arise.
"What return on investment do you see from your designs?"
This seems like an odd one, however good design shouldn't just look good, it should create business. The problem with most designers is that they prioritise aesthetics over revenue, when in actual fact they should work hand in hand. A good design should motivate a potential customer to take action, not just look pretty.
So that's it. There's obviously a long list of other contractors and businesses that you can outsource too, however these are the main ones you will encounter and the ones that are important to get right.
Let me know in the comments if there's any that I missed or anything you would do differently.
P.S Interested in outsourcing your marketing? Check out your options by clicking here.
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