It’s hard to do it alone – get others to help

During a recent quarterly plan, I set a higher financial goal for my freelance website design business.

What I realized mid way was that except being focused on reviewing my 90-day plan, I didn’t really change anything about how I actually work.

Instead, I decided to work hard. I stayed up late a couple of nights over the past week. I’ve pushed myself to do more sales and some upselling.

But now I’m realizing that if I simply work harder on the same things I’ve been doing in the past, then I’ll only get slightly better results.

Yet, for my 90-day challenge, I set to increase my income by 50%, which means I must improve my way of working.


It’s a bit cliché, but I must learn to work smart, not only hard.

But, where do I start?

For one – I’m in a service business.

And I already know that service business is heavily reliant on manual work that takes time.

Often, that is exactly what I charge for, – my time.

I have only 6-10 hours of work a day, so my income is limited to whatever value I can put in that time.

It’s difficult to scale a service business without getting more people involved.

And yet, over the past 10 days I’ve been doing everything myself!

How smart is that?


There are 2 ways to increase income with a service business:

  1. Find other people to help you with your work, and/or
  2. Provide more value to get more money for the same amount of time

Both of those ways involve the idea of LEVERAGE.

I must learn to leverage people, technology and skills better to increase my income.


Solution #1 – hire other people to help you

Why not hire a person that can do a portion of I do and pay him less then what I get from the client?

If I can sell a service for $60 per hour and hire someone to do it for $30 per hour, then I make 50% revenue (minus management time).

By delegating work to others I can:

  • free up my time to do other things
  • double the output of the business and increase money per hour
  • discover new ways of doing my work
  • leverage strengths of other people 

Must keep in mind when hiring others:

  • I must train hired people properly
  • I need to create time for reviewing delegated tasks
  • I need to learn to describe tasks with very clear instructions
  • I must be willing to let go of control
  • I must be willing to risk redoing work that wasn’t done to my standards


Solution #2 – charge more per hour and per project

At the moment, my hourly rate is $75 per hour.

Half of the time I build project plans and charge by the project.

The other half of the time I do maintenance work and charge by the hour.

When it comes to charging by the project, historically its either a win or loose situation.

If my client is nice and is not very picky, then I’ll be able to complete the project faster and end up making more money for each hour that I put in. If I get a very ‘anal’ client, then I spend more time on the project and it becomes less profitable.

I must improve my project workflow to detect situations when work gets out of project scope.

For example, yesterday I spent 2 hours on the phone with a client, doing website content editing.

In reality, content is something that my client needs to provide to me in its final form.

In addition, the client asked me to do website graphics modifications at a stage of website development that is past graphical design.

What can I do to avoid project issues in the future?

  1. Ask for client signatures for key steps of project flow (start, design approval, completion)
  2. Set meetings for maximum of 45 minutes – don’t work on projects with a client