Outsourcing labor has come to be a taboo phrase. The fact is, outsourcing labor is quite the opposite. In a world that is often too fast-paced where leaders feel overworked, outsourcing labor can be your key to becoming a super-dad, just in time for Father’s Day.
“Ever told your child, we’ll do it tomorrow, and in your haste, not see his sorrow?
Ever lost touch, let a friendship die, ’cause you never had time to call and say hi?
You better slow down, don’t dance so fast, time is short, the music won’t last.”
This is my favorite quotation from David L. Weatherford’s poem “Slow Dance.”
Everyone can relate to Weatherford’s poem. Too often we are so preoccupied be getting things done that we don’t notice the things that are passing us by and the people our To Do Lists are hurting.
Your life could be much more fulfilling if you didn’t have all these small nagging tasks to get done every day. Trust me, I know your feeling. But there is help, a cure. The cure is called “Outsourcing Labor.”
Outsourcing labor and other tasks opens margin in your life. If can provide you with the much needed time to watch your son’s practice, play with the dog, and talk with your wife. Embrace the idea of outsourcing labor and never say “we’ll do it tomorrow” again.
Tips for outsourcing labor:
1. Catalog – Take note for one week of everything that’s taking time away from you enjoying your life. This will help you identify areas that you can outsource and areas that must remain in house.
2. Automation – Robots have come a long way since C3PO. I currently own an iRobot Roomba 770 Vacuum Cleaning Robot, Cube Hard Floor cleaner, and soon will own a robotic lawn mower. These litte guys eliminate 2 hours of work I must do each week.
3. Re-design – Are there areas where you can restructure the things that are taking up your time? For instance, how much time do you waste preparing meals and cleaning afterwards? I suggest finding a healthy place to pick up from. Last night I had a steak, steamed vegetables, and a salad for dinner. I picked it up on my way home. It cost me 5 minutes as apposed to the 1 hour or more I would have spent preparing, cooking, and cleaning.
4. Service Companies – Do you ever take your clothes to the dry cleaners? This is a form of outsourcing labor, but enriches the economy and provides for the propietors. Find other areas where you can do this. Many laundry companies offer laundry services. For $40 I can save 4 hours a week by not doing my own laundry.
5. Help Sole-Proprietors – Thanks to sites like Craigslist, Care.com, and others, it is simple to find good help. Need a your car washed? I bet you can find someone who will do it right in your driveway. And for tasks like running to the post office, grocery shopping, and even picking up your drycleaning, try TaskRabbit.com or Needto.com.
The possibilities for buying time via outsourcing labor are almost endless. When you outsource labor it is a win-win for both parties. You can buy more time with your loved ones while providing a living for others. My only caution, don’t give up the opportunity for family time. I prefer to pick up food, because we can still eat as a family at our own table, no distractions. Except now, I have no dishes to clean so I can go right outside with my son and play in the yard.
How many hours of family time could you find in an given week?