Enhance Productivity and Efficiency with Stephen’s Innovation Insights

Innovation Insights by Stephen Shapiro

calculatorRed Adair, the oil well firefighter, once said, “If you think it’s expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur.”

Over the years, I’ve learned this the hard way.

When I’ve hired freelancers based primarily on price, the quality suffered. I paid dearly in terms of iterations and rework. Something that could have been completed in a week, might take 2 or 3. Instead of the work being done with limited involvement on my part, “amateurs” require a lot of handholding.

I now value my time more than anything else. Hiring talent requires less support from me. Each hour I spend helping someone figure something out, is one less hour I have to invest in something that can substantially grow my business.

I’ve found that truly gifted individuals can work magic. Their long-term value is significantly greater than those who are less skilled.

In my world, I see so many mediocre speakers. Event planners with financial constraints sometimes hire based on fee rather than quality. But the cost of the speaker is quite small compared to the time invested by the attendees. 100 people sitting in a room for an hour is a big payroll burn. But the bigger cost is the opportunity cost. Each hour they spend listening to a presentation that does not provide real value, is an hour they can’t invest in growing your business.

Or, if you hire a consultant, the real cost is not their fee. The real cost is the impact of their advice on your business. Most consultants who give you their two cents are overcharging. If you implement their recommendations, you could waste time and money. Or worse, you could negatively impact your business.

When investing time or money in anything, consider the total cost.

There’s on old Yiddish proverb, “He who marries for money earns it.”

In the world of business, I believe there is a corollary. “He who hires based on price pays for it.”

  1. Stephen- It’s like you’re following me around, waiting for me to get out of a meeting, and then creating ammunition that I can use to support my assertions to clients. Thank you! One more article that I can point to and say: “See? SEEEEEE???” Haha. PS. Thank you for killing the Facebook comment system.

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