We small business owners need to stick together and support each other. We are very good at what we do, but the very nature of a small business means we can’t always solve our clients’ issues alone, or we don’t have all the skills required to promote, manage and grow our own business.
I think many of us are guilty of feeling we have to do everything ourselves, and we can’t afford to outsource work. I know this is something I am guilty of.
This is where we can help each other, stick to our strengths and set up strategic partnerships with like-minded business contacts with complementary skills. If there is a job you don’t enjoy or don’t have the skills for, when you pass that to another small business you can then concentrate on your core skill set, which hopefully you do enjoy; otherwise why did you set your business up?
I find the best scenario is when you can swap skills directly with another company. I have managed to do this a few times myself. A very apt example is to do with this blog. Liz Broomfield of Libro Proof-Reading and Copy-Editing Services proof-reads all my posts to correct my terrible spelling, mistypes and grammar, and in return I can offer bookkeeping advice.
Also recently I approached an IT company and offered to be a consultant Sage expert for them. They were then able to visit a prospective client to review their IT systems, and as it turned out they were the only ones who offered Sage support and advice as part of the service. This gave them a unique selling point which made them stand out from the IT crowd. We can now both benefit from this sharing of skills.
So think about where your strengths lie, and where alliances could be made – then we can all support each other and grow.
Photo: Aidan Jones on Flickr