Offline situations can have quite a devastating effect on your blogging, and whilst a lot of my niche sites run on autopilot, that is a lot more difficult for this site.
If I was going to be travelling for some time it would be possible to hand over the reigns to a possible guest author, or to publish some content with a forward timestamp, but because this blog is intended to be a community site, where I interact with my audience, if there is going to be a short delay in my publishing schedule, I tend to take the less complicated route… so be it.
I have been extremely busy offline for the last week, and whilst I have lots of material prepared, I opted not to publish it, because I knew I wouldn’t have time to respond to any questions. I did have enough time to continue responding to comments both here and elsewhere, and to see what was happening in the blogging and internet marketing world.
Whilst I don’t outsource work on this blog, I do use out-sourcing for other projects online, and heavily use outsourcing offline. The offline outsourcing is actually setup extremely well, though many might look on it as being a little lazy.
Watering The Plants
In Poland they have a saying roughly translated, “Build a house, plant a tree, conceive a son”. Trees obviously have other benefits, such as looking nice, hiding ugly features, sheltering you from the breeze, and giving some privacy.
So for my new house it was decided that we should get some trees planted as soon as possible around the borders. We should have done it a few years ago when we first purchased the land, but small trees have this bad habit of walking off on the back of someone else’s lorry if left unattended and we had other priorities.
Planting trees in my new (future) garden isn’t a one man job.
So we had a team of 6 guys plus a small tractor with trailer, and planted ~300 trees in 5 hours.
At the time we thought the ground was moist enough and plenty of rain had been forecast, but the weather let us down.
Early last week I ended up spending a whole day watering the 300 trees – I couldn’t arrange anyone to do it at short notice, plus every now and then it is good for me to get out of the house, plus I was able to oversee other things going on.
The Water Feature
We always planned to have some kind of water feature in the garden, partially because of the “ambiance”, and partially through necessity – our land has a gradual slope, and water collects at the bottom even though it is well drained.
The initial plans were quite modest until my father-in-law got a little carried away.
By the time the excavator finished the hole is over 2 metres deep in places, a nice figure of 8 with a pedestal in the smaller section approximately 2 metres across that is the basis for some kind of waterfall feature.
We decided that whilst we had the heavy machinery available it was time to also dig the pool, and a couple of days later the concrete bed was laid.
That is a view from one of the guest bedrooms. The pool isn’t huge 12m x 5m x 1.5m deep but as I tend not to leave the house too much, it will prove a useful convenience to keep fit.
Roof & Plumbing
If that wasn’t enough, we have roof tiles now being laid, and the whole plumbing and heating installation being finalized.
The guys who are doing the roof also built most of the house, and there is a specialist team of 3 guys doing the plumbing and heating installation.
This Is All About Niche Marketing & Blogging
Some jobs you can do yourself, even gain significant pleasure doing them, but at the end of the day using efficient tools, and sometimes outsourcing specific tasks is necessary.
You can’t afford to do them yourself
I am probably capable of “mucking in with the lads” on the building site, in fact my current 100 year old cottage I spent 3 months full time, with one hired hand renovating, but that isn’t an economic use of my time. Last week was quite exceptional, I have probably spent only 2 weeks so far on the land since we started actually building the house.
In many ways I am probably as far removed from the building of my house as Bill Gates is from the development of Microsoft products.
Me >> My Wife >> My Father-In-Law >> Building Site Manager / Building Firm Owner / Plumbing Contractors / Suppliers >> Manual Labour
I have met most of the people involved, but I don’t handle the day-to-day issues, and when I do it is primarily in consultation with my wife. She actually did her own out-sourcing deal – she runs her father’s manufacturing & wholesale business, and he takes care of the building work (he doesn’t get his hands dirty), and spends time with his friends in “business development” meetings.
We are being “thrifty” with our spending, but that is a much better option than attempting to do everything ourselves.
It is however important to know how to do the tasks you assign to others, or to judge the quality of the work. If I hadn’t spent so much time working on my cottage, I couldn’t possibly spend so little time on the current building work. In the same way, if I didn’t know how to build a website, I wouldn’t be happy outsourcing it.
I also know enough about programming to review code, test it effectively, and release products that work.
Don’t try to do everything yourself