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Finding the Balance

August 24, 2022by Barbara Flynn0

Many of us find it challenging to balance work-life with our personal lives. It is tough when our work-life is our own business. When we own our own business, we eat, sleep (or try to), dream about, and breathe our business. So that our company can succeed, we put everything we have into that business. We often put aside “fun things”, because something came up with the business that couldn’t wait. These things could range from an employee calling in, and there was no replacement, client issues or a natural disaster has swept the building away. After dealing with these issues, we are exhausted, but we must start over the next day.

I owned and operated a family retail business with my husband for over ten years. It was a labor of love, and we worked hard to make the business successful. Along the way, we learned what it meant to sacrifice parts of our lives for our company. It took us a lot of trial and error before we understood that we didn’t have to sacrifice everything to have both personal life and a successful business. When my husband and I first took over the family business, he managed the day-to-day operations, such as dealing with the salesmen, vendors, customers, etc. You could say he was the “face” of the business.

I was the AR/AP, HR, your all-around-back-office-person. If you had a financial, employment or question regarding how the business was set up, I was the one to ask. We were also the parents of two young children. My husband sacrificed more time than I did, taking the brunt of the working hours so I could be home more with our children. Combined, we worked over 100 hours weekly in the retail building (sounds familiar?).

I handled all the bookkeeping and payroll tasks on my own while trying to manage our employees and the revolving functions of cash and banking each day. I was quickly becoming drained. Little things would fall through the cracks. We would continuously get solicitations from payroll companies, and I would push them aside, thinking, why do I need these? I am and can do this. When I finally sat down one day and did a cost analysis of the time I spent on payroll per quarter and what it would cost me to pay a payroll company, I was surprised at the result. I showed the figure to my husband, and we signed up the following week. After making this decision, I found it was a relief; a weight had been lifted off my shoulders. I no longer had this huge issue to deal with every week, month, quarter, and end of the year. Now all I had to do was print off my report from our time clock, check it for accuracy, and upload it to the payroll company. The entire process usually took me about 30 minutes compared to the time and money I spent in the past. The time I freed up from outsourcing my payroll enabled me to spend more time with my family.

Cost analyses are essential to your business. Are the daily tasks cost-effective to your business or would it be better for you to outsource the service? Outsourcing does not mean that you have failed; you have realized that you are doing the right thing to make your business successful.

When you look at your business and find the tasks that you are possibly struggling with or spending too much time with, such as payroll or bookkeeping, seek help from professionals that can save you time and money. It may seem a significant expense, but have you considered your own time? Your time is money you could spend on other parts of your business or other aspects of your life to find your balance.

Sally Houle

Barbara Flynn

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