Building a Business Support Team

An accountant. Whether you’ve got an in-house bookkeeper or outsource to an accountant, you need someone to keep your numbers in check. Yes, you should understand your own financials, but even if you’re accounting-savvy, it’s worth it to consult someone else who has an unbiased perspective on how your business is doing and what can help it grow.

A lawyer. There are plenty of do-it-yourself legal options out there, but there are also times when you simply need to talk to a real person. If you’re vacillating between saving some money and consulting an attorney on a crucial question, don’t be pennywise and pound-foolish. Find an attorney you can rely on, and you’ll make better decisions and progress further faster.

IT help. Sure, some of us are born techies. If that doesn’t describe you, then one of the most frustrating parts of being your own boss is also being your own “IT guy” (that’s the part that drives me most crazy). You can learn to do lots of tech chores on your own—but is that the best use of your time? You need someone who can keep your systems running smoothly, advise you on the best ways to update and upgrade, and just plain take care of problems faster than you can.

A marketing master. Marketing is one of the most important facets of small business ownership. It can make or break your business. Yet, especially with the rise of social media, so many of us feel we can do it all ourselves. Some of us can—but if you can’t, you’d be smart to seek out a consultant who can put you on the right path, teach you how to “get social” and maybe even take some of the heavy lifting off your hands.

A listening ear. Whether it’s your spouse, a colleague from the chamber of commerce, or even another entrepreneur you connect with in an online community, we all need someone to lean on when the challenges of building a business threaten to get us down. Find someone who can listen, absorb and help you work things out.

Of course, there’s one place where you can get help with all of the above—and more. The mentors at SCORE can guide you with everything from technology to marketing to financing your business. If you don’t have a mentor yet, visit the SCORE website to get connected and get the help you’re looking for, 24/7.

Rieva Lesonsky
<p> Rieva is CEO of GrowBiz Media, a content and consulting company specializing in covering small businesses and entrepreneurship. She was formerly Editorial Director of Entrepreneur Magazine and has written several books about small business and entrepreneurship. <br /> <a href="" target="_blank" title="GrowBizMedia"></a> | <a href="" target="_blank" title="Rieva on Twitter">@rieva</a> | <a href="" title="blogs by Rieva">More from Rieva</a></p>


Rieva, excellent post. I

Rieva, excellent post. I have worked with small businesses for over 20 years, and have always advised that they need their own board of advisors. Even if not formalized, a small business owner needs to have these experts they can call on from time-to-time. Many business owners are excellent at their trade (making widgets) but feel they can do everything else themselves too. That is a recipe for disaster and they would save a lot of headache if they would outsource the appropriate functions from the start. Great info!

Rieva, great article! Many of

Rieva, great article! Many of the suggestions have hit home for me. I have been working on a website FOREVER and it's still not done. While their are many post,blogs,tutorials,e-books etc that claim they can help you build a website from scratch, sometimes it's not worth the time and effort. I have learned that my time could be better spent. Thank you for all the great information!

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