It’s the conundrum that every business will at some point face: In order to grow you need more man-power, but in order to have more man-power you need more money and therefore need your business to grow. It’s the cycle that can stall out any business. Don’t worry though, because believe it or not there are ways to take your business to the next level without spending a bunch of money, if any money at all.
The first thing you should recognize is that you’re not alone. There’s a community of creative/small business owners in the same situation as you. Why not tap on their shoulder for help? Let’s say you’ve mastered product photography, but are in desperate need of someone to help you with your website. Look within your network of fellow creative business owners and see if you there’s someone you or one of your friends knows who’s a website wizard. Reach out to them! Offer something that you’re good at in return for their service. It’s a great way for both you to get what you need, support small businesses, and save money, all at once.
Another great way to get a helping hand is through interns. Getting internship experience is very important for college kids, in some school’s it’s even required before you graduate. For a student, it’s an opportunity to get invaluable work experience in their field, and for the employer, it’s a great way to get some more affordable help. Contact a college, university, or community college to see how you might connect with students. You can always post on sites like Internship.com, too.
In general, internships run the length of a semester, and most students need a certain number of hours in order to get college credit. Most internships go unpaid and instead offer college credit. Paid internships are few and far between, so if you can afford to pay the student a little bit of money or a bonus once they’ve completed the semester (it doesn’t need to be anything extravagant), you might get more people interested. Before you begin an internship program make sure you look at the legal factors.
If all else fails, look to your friends and family. Ask if they’d be able to spare some time to help you out. Have them come over for an afternoon and offer to make dinner when the day’s done. After all, what are friends for? When it comes time to help them out when they need it, they know you’ll be there to support them too.
When it comes to growing your business, there are always affordable options!