I need a press release
I was told I need to be on Facebook
We need someone to create tweets for us
and so it goes…
One piece of a much larger puzzle, offered as the answer by a well meaning advisor, expert or friend, or taken out of context from a book, presentation or speech. Tactics offered up without an accompanying strategy served up like a gourmet meal that has only appetizers and no main course.
The problem with pieces is that you need all of them to get a full picture.
We have become spoiled. Information is widely accessible and often free. As a result we have been lulled into a false sense of confidence that specialized expertise no longer matters. We have the pieces of the puzzle, and we can put them together on our own. Who needs a PR professional when you can write or buy a press release? Hire a web designer- pshaw! We’ve got WordPress! Pay fair value for writers ? Of course not, we have article directories and PLR content.
But just because we can doesn’t mean we should. Having the pieces is only one part of the equation. A puzzle master will have a strategy for how they all fit together. He or she will assemble the right pieces, faster and better than you can do on your own. Specialized expertise is not a waste, it is actually a more cost efficient method of achieving your goals.
Being an expert in your own business will require you to strategically choose how you spend your time. If you are bootstrapping a new business you will need to get creative and do some things on your own. However, you cannot remain a bootstrapper for the lifecycle of your business. At some point, to grow and take your business to the next level you will need to hire skills that you do not possess.
In the short term, you may save money by figuring things out on your own but what will you have sacrificed in the process?
Specialists invest in their ongoing education. They hang out with other specialists to learn and grow. They have inside knowledge and competitive information. When you hire a specialist you are paying not only for skill but their contacts, database of knowledge, hard won lessons, shortcuts, tips and more.
I realize that we are living in leaner times. You cannot hire a specialist for every business process but you should consider it for mission critical tasks. Weigh your upfront investment against the return and you may also conclude that it’s cheaper to hire someone who can take the right pieces and make a whole picture that is just right for your business.
Do you hire specialized expertise or have you gone the do-it-yourself route? Why or why not?