March 16, 2022 by Peter Liston
How investing in a global team lead to a Prime Minister's Award for Veteran Employer of the Year
I'm a passionate Australian business owner. I served in the Australian Army for over a decade and deployed multiple times to warlike operations in Afghanistan and peacekeeping operations in East Timor. Growing Australian jobs is something I feel personally responsible for as a business owner and they key to achieving this is to have a highly profitable, resilient business.
Adopting a hybrid global team model leads to more Australian jobs by focusing on one key ratio. Switch the balance in your wages expenditure between admin and revenue generating activities. Empower your Australian team to operate in their highest space and strip the boring, time consuming administration out of their day.
Once this switch occurs, you see immediate returns in time and cash. More time to focus on sales and relationships, more cash to focus on new team members to drive growth.
How to apply 'value suck' to your business
In business there are some roles that get you through today and others that change your future. We need to create the time to focus on the game changers.
- Daily roles are filled with administration mixed in with some revenue generating activities.
Game changing roles are leading our teams, focusing on their development and creating new relationships which drive new business partnerships.
Value suck occurs when we identify all our lowest value activities and suck them out of our day, delegating to ensure we only operate on our highest space. This thinking is applied and practiced and all levels of the organisation. If you're too busy, apply value suck to your 2IC. Strip the lowest value activities out of their day, creating capacity for you to delegate some of your workload to them.
The only rule that matters when it comes to building a global team
VIRTUAL ASSISTANTS ARE NOT VIRTUAL. Treat them with respect. Teach, nurture and empower them. They are looking to spend their career in your business so set them up success by investing in their training and give them the time to learn.
Your top 3 tips for getting it right
Implementing an offshore team is easy to get right, but easy to get wrong. Here's my top 3 tips from years of perfecting the process.
- Don't go cheap. This one really shouldn't be said, but it needs to. You always will get what you pay for. I cringe when I hear people boasting about how they pay $3 per hour for a virtual assistant. You can 100% guarantee that assistant will flip to the next best offer the second it comes along, ghosting their employer and never to be seen or heard of again. They are saving you a lot of money, treat them with respect by paying a high wage relative to their community.
- Use a managed agency. Beware the wild west of Upwork and other platforms. The whole point of global teams is to save time so let experts find, recruit, train, onboard, manage and administer your global team members. With a managed agency, you can be confident that you are actually getting the hours you are paying for (rather than being on the bottom of someone's priority list.
- The biggest expense will always be your time - so get it right the first time. Your time is precious so don't waste it training a team member who disappears after a few months. Prepare yourself prior to their first day by clearly identifying the tasks you want them to achieve. Define your success metrics then build procedures or 'how-to-guides'. Then it simply your turn to be a good human by nurturing them.
The return on investment.
Apart from switching the cash ratio from admin to revenue, the biggest advantage is in your time. There is a 5:1:50 return on investment. If you do a one hour task, once per week, it will take you five hours to train someone entirely so you can delegate it forever. This saves you 50 hours per year, every year for the rest of your life. A full week of your time back from a small investment in training and teaching someone.
The wrap up
Investing in a global team focus on administration allows the Australian team to operate in their highest space. Relationships and revenue. Don't 'outsource' or 'offshore', invest in a global team integrated into your daily operations as a critical driver of your strong, resilient business model.
To get it right, contact Trust the Process now
Real time case study - Secure Windows.
In my first business post Army, my business partner (and Duntroon classmate) Matthew Moseley and I installed window locks into apartments in Sydney and New South Wales. We were struggling with administration juggling hundreds of appointments per week with staff all over Sydney. Cashflow was really tight and we had no resources to grow the team and take advantage of a rapidly growing opportunity
We bought on our first Virtual Assistant to help us manage the admin. Her name is Day and she helped us manage the bookings.
This initial step freed up over three hours a day and the seed was planted. It gave three hours per day to meet more clients and win more jobs. More work came more admin so we continued to grow the team. Bookings, account managements, receptionist, data manager. We ended up with a team of six fulltime, highly motivated, intelligent and committed global team members.
Mostt importantly, it started a chain reaction.
More time = more sales. More sales = more revenue. Less wages spend on admin = more profitability. More profitability = more Australian jobs. More Australian jobs in revenue generating roles for the business.
By investing in an offshore team for our administration, we were able to grow our Australian workforce to over 30 employees. This lead to Matthew and I to be awarded the Prime Minister's Veteran Employment Award for Veteran Employer of the year.
It was our personal mission to train and employ as many veterans as possible in our business.
We loved our relationships with our global teams we took it to the next level and startedTrust the Processwhich focuses on finding the best global team members and integrating them into Australian businesses.
........ and just in case you were wondering what happened to our first VA Day? She now leads a team of over 100 global team members supporting the growth of Australian businesses. We don't just talk the talk - we practice what we preach at Trust the Process.
If you would like to chat to me directly, book a time in my calendar. I'm always up for a chat.