On my blog this week, I’m taking a different approach than I normally do. I’m excited to have my first guest contributor. I love being able to support and collaborate with my fellow entrepreneurs.
Miranda Schroeder is a home, business and lifestyle blog helping young women create a home, life and business that they love. She blends her corporate marketing career with her passion for vintage and design.
Miranda shares the real, raw intricacies of life and has built a loyal audience doing so. Today, she’s sharing her thoughts on how you can manage a blog when you work full time! Her key takeaways are spot on and echo my own thoughts!
HOW TO MANAGE A BLOG WHEN YOU WORK FULL-TIME
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We hear it all of the time, the term “side hustle.” But what if your side hustle is a full-time hustle sitting on top of the mountain of work pouring in from your 9-5? Great question! And let’s not forget the dishes that need done, the dog that needs groomed, and your sheets that haven’t been washed in three weeks.
I’m posing a few ways to help you not only keep your head on straight, but also kick ass at BOTH of your full-time jobs because let’s be real… owning a blog or business is never a side, it’s a damn steak.
CREATE REPEATABLE PROCESSES
This has been such a learning curve. I can’t tell you how important it is to create processes. Processes will help you do more with less, cut time spent, increase efficiency, and keep your work on track.
Having processes is great, but make sure they are documented and repeatable. Create templates, FAQ sheets, workbooks, systems, procedures, whatever you need so that you are beyond ready to deliver your products and/or services effectively and efficiently.
Here are some of our current process projects:
- Keeping our Acuity scheduling links updated, synced with our calendars & integrated with our Zoom video chat
- Creating Trello boards for all of our clients & the tactical services we execute for them
- Updating our client contracts with new terms
- Creating an office hours/contact PDF for client communications
- Revamping our client invoicing process with Quickbooks
- Designing an on boarding road map for new clients
- Creating tools, templates, workbooks, etc. for gathering client info
We are knee deep in sorting this all out, but we know that better processes and resources are going to be a win-win for us and our clients. All of the apps above play a huge role in helping us deliver a better customer experience.
USE THE RIGHT TOOLS
The right technology, software, apps and tools will help you tremendously. It can be hard to invest your money in tools right off the bat, but if you want to grow your blog or business, you HAVE to invest in the right software. Here is what I’m using:
- Client scheduling – Acuity
- Invoicing & bookkeeping – Quickbooks
- Email marketing & automation – ActiveCampaign
- Pinterest scheduling – Tailwind
- Instagram scheduling – Later
- Affiliate marketing – ShareASales
- Landing page Software – ClickFunnels
SET WORK BOUNDARIES
If you work from sunrise to sunset + half the time you should be sleeping you will not only be tired, but also miserable. You have to know how to set work boundaries. If you need to get up a few hours early to work on your business before heading into the office, DO IT, but don’t brush off the importance of an actual lunch break or attending your kiddos soccer game.
If you let work overtake your life, you aren’t going to find it enjoyable! With help from my life coach, here are a few ways I’m setting boundaries:
- Walking the dog as a mid-morning break
- Taking an ACTUAL lunch break (no more toast at my laptop)
- Ending my work day at the same time each day
- Committing to an evening workout 4-5 days/week
- Cooking dinner & eating at the table each night
- 10:30/11:00PM bedtime. Lights out people!
AVOID WORKLOAD BURNOUT
It’s so easy to work yourself to death when you are working full-time for someone else AND running a freaking company! Setting boundaries (like I mentioned above) will help alleviate burnout but what happens when your workload is way out of control and you have no choice but to buckle down and work 80 hours a week? Here are some things that can help:
- Light a candle while you work, play music, make a latte or tea
- Give yourself at least ONE complete day off during the week whether it is a Sunday or a Wednesday. Don’t even check email or social that day.
- Book a vacation! It will give you something to look forward to. We are obsessed with traveling through Airbnb. If you haven’t created an account yet, you can do so here and get $40 off your first stay!
- Make plans with friends. This will hold you accountable to step away from work for a bit
- Schedule relaxation. Literally write in your calendar “Watch Netflix for one hour” (I’m not freaking joking)
DELEGATE. DELEGATE. DELEGATE.
I saved the best for last! Delegating is your path to feeling sane. The right help will take work off of your plate and assist you in accomplishing much more in much less time.
On top of that, they might even be able to bring expertise to the table you don’t have in house. Before you start delegating, refer back to point number one. The better your processes and tools are, the easier it will be to delegate.
If you are thinking, “Miranda, I don’t have the funds to delegate,” hear me out. You don’t have to bring on a full-time or even part time employee to help you get tasks crossed off the list.
Consider hiring an intern on contract or a local/virtual assistant (VA) on contract. You can pay them hourly to help get work done while managing cost. Here are some things you could potentially delegate to a VA or an intern:
- Social media management & scheduling
- Email newsletter sends
- Outreach for collaborations
- Plug & play contracts/proposals
- Analytics or report generation
- Errands (if they are local, not joking)
- Proofreading/fact checks/research
Or, maybe it’s not work, work that you need to delegate. Maybe your husband is going to have to pick the kids up from school or throw in a load of dishes We spend a lot of time doing things that HAVE to be done but they don’t necessarily drive our business forward.
There was one point when I had a laundry service that would pick up my dirty laundry from my house and drop it off clean and neatly folded. I can’t make that shit up guys. I can do whatever I set my mind to, but I CANNOT do it all. I need all the help I can get to keep these plates spinning.
MORE BLOG POSTS YOU MIGHT ENJOY:
- How to Legally Start an Online Business
- How I Grew My Pinterest from 100K to 5 Million Monthly Viewers in 3 Months
- How to Stop Wasting Money on Facebook Ads: A Guide from the Inside
- How to Manage a Blog When You Work Full-time
- 5 Steps to Getting Ahead of Content Creation & Planning
These are just a handful of ways to help you manage running a business AND working a 9-5. I’m learning new ways to ride this roller coaster every single day. The right processes, tools, and boundaries will help you keep your business on track while you crush it at your day job.
Photography by the talented: Erin of Sweet Lemon Drop
You can follow my journey, or start mapping out one of your own in my FB group, Map It Life & Business. The community is filled with some amazing connections and many first-class resources! Click here to join! Share your thoughts in the group or feel free to share them in the comments below.