You can't Outsource Passion
I’ve become a big fan of delegation as an entrepreneur or business owner. Delegation can look like “outsourcing”, “hiring out”, or “contracting”. Once you get to a certain point in your entrepreneurial journey, if you don’t delegate, both you and your company will suffer greatly.
Despite my affinity for delegation, there’s one thing that can’t be outsourced, and that’s passion.
Every idea, company, non-profit, project, you name it, needs a heartbeat. Just as every cell in the body relies on blood being pumped from the heart, your start-up needs a vessel pumping life to each part of it. For a start-up, that’s passion. When we think of it that way, it doesn’t make sense to try to pull that lifeblood from another source. It needs to start within the leadership team and infuse into every part of the company. Even so, let's take a look at a few other reasons as to why your team shouldn’t outsource something like passion.
Passion keeps you going when things get rough. If you’re new to the entrepreneurial world, you’ll quickly learn that it's not an easy path to take. In order to make it past the 12 hour days, complaints from customers, tears, and a plethora of other problems you’ll endure, you’re going to need something to keep you going. I promise that money, societal expectations, or pride aren’t enough of a reason. That will all quickly fade and you’ll be left questioning why you thought this was worth it in the first place.
Yes, it's possible for other people to inspire and stir your heart, however, if none of that intrinsically resonates with you, that’s going to be a hard sell. As much as you’d like to try, you can’t fool the heart.
Jeff Bezos would also agree. He once explained that many people try to “force an interest on themselves” when in reality, “you don’t choose your passions, your passions choose you".
I don’t know about you, but I’ve never sat down and laid out a list of pros and cons in order to determine lights my heart on fire. There are ways we can explore and become connected to other passions, however, deep down, a lot of our passions aren’t conscious decisions.
Passion emerged in Nicaragua when I cried tears of love two hours a day (real story) every single day for the month I was there.
Passion emerges when I’m sucked into delicately placed words, and I depth of a piece of poetry/novel grips my attention to the point I can’t put it down.
Passion emerged in the dozens of conversations I’ve had with my friends in America about how we can use business to impact the world.
Now, none of these passions were “head” decisions. They may have been influenced by thoughts, but I stumbled across them throw an organic process of discovery, and in the words of Jeff Bezos, they found me.
Not only do you need to have enough passion to fuel yourself, but as an entrepreneur, you need your passion to overflow into the rest of your teammates. Hopefully, you’ll be able to bring people onto your team who have naturally aligned passions in one way or another, but as things get hard for them as well, you’re going to have to remind them why they are here and why it's all worth it.
Passion isn’t something you can fake. People can tell when you really believe in something. And, if you’re not passionate about the direction your company is going, how can you expect anyone else to be?
Also, as an entrepreneur, you’re going to bring partners, managers, and employees onto your team and onto the difficulties that come with “starting up". Compensation only goes so far as an incentive, especially in such a volatile environment. Just as you can’t outsource passion and the will to keep fighting, the people you work with can’t either! Not only are you looking for partners and employees with the right skill set, but you’re looking for people who have passions and goals that aline with what you’re building. I promise it will be a better experience for you as a business owner and also for those you work with.
So, go ahead and outsource manual tasks, accounting, social media, or sales. In fact, as the entrepreneur, you should be delegating, however, remember that it's impossible to outsource the lifeblood of your business: passion. Take a moment to dig inside yourself and create a concrete “why” behind what you’re doing.
Found something you’re passionate about?! We’d love to hear, drop a note below!