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I’ve been talking about outsourcing a lot recently. It’s an amazing thing. For example, I shoot a wedding and then I’m done with it by Tuesday evening. Then I get to have a life the rest of the week!! Now, we have a lot of other aspects of our business that take up a lot of our time but when you think about it, outsourcing does two things 1. It relieves stress and 2. It allows you to have margin in your life to MARKET yourself!!

So what if outsourcing is too scary? I get this all the time! It’s a big step… I recognize that! My editor (who is fully booked… so sorry everyone. She’s amazing and I wish I could duplicate her! I’m working on that:) says that getting started is the hardest part. I really believe that!! So if you’re afraid to start outsourcing a BIG part of your business, start outsourcing little by little in your own home!!! I’m about to share a CRAZY concept with you…. let your HUSBAND HELP!!!

So often, female photographers are so engrained in their business that they have a hard time letting other people in. I struggled with this. I started this business and I had my own systems and then Michael came onto the scene! I was afraid of letting him in for the following reasons:

1. I didn’t like change!
2. I didn’t want Michael to see any of my systems that aren’t good! (so dumb!)
3. I wanted to maintain control (control freak right here!)

What I found is that the more I let go of, the less stress I have in my life! So when Michael started helping with the business part-time, I introduced him into our business in small ways and it was LIFE CHANGING! Below are 5 ways that YOU can also begin to introduce your husband into your business!

1. EQUIPMENT PREP! Want your husband to learn your gear? What better way than to have him clean, prep and pack it before weddings or shoots!? Let me tell you, this will relieve SO much stress! I never pack gear, clean gear, clear cards or charge batteries. Michael does all of this!! This allows me to focus on the timeline, vendor emails and the locations for the day.

2. EQUIPMENT MAINTENANCE! I despise Fedex, shipments and making runs to the post office! When our gear needs work, Michael takes care of all of this! He checks to make sure I don’t need a certain lens for a few days and then he ships it off to CPS. I trust him more than I trust myself with this stuff! He calls Canon to make sure it arrives and will be returned on time and I would NEVER do that. We would be 1 day out from a wedding and I would say “Um, where’s my lens?!” and then have a freak out. Michael, on the other hand, keeps up with all of this well!

3. THE BOOKS! If you’re the creative and your husband isn’t… why are you trying to manage your income and expenses?! Your husband could sit down once a month for 2-3 hours and manage this for you! This was the first BIG thing that I handed over when Michael joined. We sat down and I walked him through how to record income and expenses and when we made some changes to improve our systems. :) What a relief!

4. SOUNDING BOARD: This is harder than it sounds but it’s so important. When you start going to your husband for advice and to hear his opinion about certain aspects of your business, you’re inviting him in and truly treating him like a business partner…. and he deserves that role in your business! However, you have to be patient because if he knows nothing about this industry and this side of your world, it’s going to take a little time for him to get accustomed to it. Talk about what you’re learning, what you’re dreaming about and help him become a part of your business by giving him a voice! Michael’s ideas are better than mine these days… why? Because he’s not as emotionally attached to things like I am! I NEED his advice and opinion and I don’t remember how I made decisions without him!

5. SORT EMAILS: This seems like a boring job… and it is. But email is boring in general! :) I have to do emails and Michael helps me by going through my emails and LABELING them. This is a great way to divide up work because Michael sees the in’s and out’s of my business and know’s what is going on because he sees my emails. He doesn’t respond to all of my emails but he does respond to the ones that I don’t need to have any say in. It’s so helpful for me to see which are inquiry emails and which emails are not urgent!!

Whew! Anytime I write posts like this I say “I’m going to keep it short and sweet” and then that NEVER happens! So I hope this was helpful AND I also just want to say that this is about 1/10th of what Michael does in our business. What I mentioned above was what he started off doing in our business and now? Now he wishes I would STOP letting go of things and handing them over to him! :) The list is ever-growing!

xoxo, Katelyn
10 Comments Ask Anything, Education
  1. Courtney Cannon reply

    Love this post Katelyn! My husband prepped our gear for this past weekend’s wedding and it was amazing how much time it gave back to me. Little things go a long way! :)

  2. Nicole Salter reply

    I TOTALLY relate! I’m SUCH a control freak! Trying to let Max in slowly but its so hard for me! Thanks for letting us know you’re still this way too ;)

  3. Lacoya H. reply

    YAY! I’m working on my husband! He doesn’t know it yet, but he’s going to be the best accountant ever! He already handles most of our personal finances. Why not add the business, too! YES! :)

  4. Megan Kelsey Marcus reply

    This will be a great resource when Justin and I get married and we’re under the same roof! It’d be GREAT to never have to worry about batteries being charged ever again! But a scary transition at the same time… haha! I think it takes a special kind of person to be able to work with their significant other and maintain respect and manners. That’s the thing that I get worried about. It might be a good potential blog post to talk about how you guys work together without killing each other (I know you always say you have separate offices)! Haha. Anyway, wonderful post and it makes me excited for this time during wedding season next year :):)

  5. Dustin Harrison reply

    Ive been with my girlfriend for 9 months now and i try my best at helping out. Whether its being a pack mule and carrying all equipment during a shoot or as simple as swapping batteries in the charger. I try my best to understand her business, i try my best to help he out in every way. 3. I wanted to maintain control (control freak right here!). this describes her to a T, but she is slowly allowing me to become part of her business. One day ill be doing the same that your husband is doing for you. Thank you for the great read.

    • Erica Hildebrandt reply

      Dustin,

      Where as your girlfriend sounds like a very beautiful and intelligent woman, I am sure if I knew her as I might, she would like you to know she values and respects your assistance. I believe she would feel that she doesn’t want to demand so much from you for her business baby that she has alone ran for 4 years.

      But she loves you so much! ;)

  6. Karen reply

    Just started with an editor this year after 12 years of business because I wanted my summers back to be with my school aged children. After watching nanny’s watch them the past few years I decided to put my money elsewhere and JUST LET THE EDITING GO!!! Still working on getting colors and styling matched to my style and liking, but reading that it takes time is encouraging. I am confidant that by the fall, which is my busiest time of the year, we will be on stride together!!

  7. Sabrina reply

    Before we were even married, my husband started helping me with the books. Before he came along, I was still using a check book register! Needless to say, things were a disaster. Thankfully he enjoys that and is good with it!!

  8. Kristina W. reply

    Fun! I was wondering what some of the different things you and he handled!

  9. Elizabeth Moore reply

    My hubby does all the same things for me, and I’m so grateful! Running a photography business is NOT easy, but he does take on a lot of the “business” part of things, allowing me to focus on the photography. My work has improved dramatically as a result, and we both feel like contributors at the end of the day. It’s a total win-win! Just don’t let business get in the way of the relationship. We always keep our business relationship and our marriage totally separate.

    Great article, you’re exactly spot on!

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