Many people starting out think that they will do things themselves as it doesn’t cost anything – but there are unfortunately hidden costs to that approach.

In this session I will cover some of the points to consider when it comes to the DIY method.

By the end you will realise that your own time isn’t actually free.

When you start a business, with limited funds, sometimes you have to do things yourself as the funds just aren’t available to use the services of a professional.

However, you should be aware that this situation can only exist temporarily in the early stages – some business owners continue with the same approach down the line, where it actually ends up costing them money that they don’t realise.

When we looked at all the demands on your time, some of them will be very valuable to the business – for these you should increase the amount of time you spend on them, whilst for others you would be much better off using a professional to help you. This is where your accounts are so useful, and we’ll cover these in both the finance and ongoing business development sections.

There are also a couple of hidden costs to doing things yourself

1) Quality/Hassle – you’re a professional at what you do, so that is where you should spend your time as the business develops. If you continue trying to do all the jobs yourself, you will find that the quality of them means that you are actually losing business as a result. A professional could do the job better for you, and with much less hassle to you trying to figure things out yourself.

2) Tax relief – Now unfortunately there is no tax relief on your own time. You might spend many hours on your website for example, but if you had engaged a professional then their time would have been a business expense that qualified for tax relief – in effect making them more affordable than the amount you paid them. Indeed, you might like to think of the tax relief as a discount in effect.

In the later stages of the business you shouldn’t be spending time on tasks that can be outsourced, instead your time should be devoted to both working on the business as well as in the business.

It’s important to remember from the earlier session that you have limited time and lots of new jobs, so planning to seek help with some of them will help you.