Posted by: T.D. Inoue | November 13, 2011

Don’t Outsource Your Soul

One of the first rules of entrepreneurship is “don’t outsource your soul.” And yet, it’s so damned difficult not to. I’ve recently come to grips with this myself and its a painful lesson.

As an entrepreneur, from the day you conceive of your idea, you’re going to be overwhelmed with things to do. This was more than true for my wife and I when we started OurKudos. We were trying to get all the legal aspects handled, deal with trademarks, hire and manage employees, create ambitious marketing plans, deal with social networking, design products – the list is never-ending.

And so we had to decide upon a distribution of labor. Since we weren’t really familiar with the most effective ways of utilizing Twitter and Facebook to market ourselves, we hired consultants to guide us through the process. That in itself was good. They helped educate us so that we had a much better understanding of these platforms for getting our message out. But then we made a fatal flaw – since our hands were so busy, we hired someone to manage our social presence, and this has been a disaster. We outsourced our soul.

I’m especially pissed because I know better. I knew that it was OUR job to do these things because only we know our message and tone well enough to engage others and share our passion. And as CEO, it is my job as the public face of the business to do this. Personally.

I could go on and on about all the missteps we made. About the wasted time and frustration. About the wasted money. Ugh.

Instead, I’ll just add to the chorus of voices reminding you not to outsource your soul so that hopefully, you can avoid making the same stupid mistake I did.

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