The views of this article are the perspective of the author and may not be reflective of Confessions of the Professions.
Stress-who doesn’t feel it? For many business owners, though, it can be a nagging companion. Before they know it, they might already deal with the signs of burnout.
It’s one of the primary factors that drive a growing number of Australian entrepreneurs to work with business process outsourcing providers. In the Philippines, the country is one of the top five BPO markets. It ranks second at 25% after the United States.
Where Does the Stress Come From?
A 2017 survey by Medibank revealed that almost 5 million Aussies said they were stressed. It’s an increase of over 30% compared to the previous decade.
The reasons for stress can vary. In the survey, it ranged from lack of sleep to social media. A KPMG report, meanwhile, provided insights on startup stress:
- On average, startup founders worked 64 hours a week. Usually, employees work for 40 to 50 hours in five days. More than half of the respondents worked during their days off.
- Startup owners worked round the clock. Over 70% brought their devices to bed.
- Because of their long work hours, they might have less time on personal activities. These included spending time with their family and friends. Almost 25% hadn’t taken a three-day leave for more than a year.
- They also faced many challenges. Over 60% said they struggled to hire or to engage the right people. At least 50% mentioned problems in closing sales and accessing funds.
- Many founders took a pay cut. About 70% received a salary way less than their previous job. Almost half of them didn’t feel satisfied with their compensation.
- Around 43% admitted feeling very stressed. Over 20% claimed they felt extreme stress.
In 2019, many Australian business owners, especially manufacturers, experienced cash-flow stress. In a report by Smart Company, these people were concerned about the decline of the value of the US dollar. It could mean higher production costs.
Jessica Bruder also discussed the psychological effects of the “fake it, till you make it” culture. Some entrepreneurs project themselves as already successful or winning in the hopes they will eventually become the person they pretend to be. In reality, they’re dealing with anxiety and extreme stress.
Dealing with Stress through BPO
Stress can be dangerous since it affects both the mind and body. It can raise the risks of anxiety and depression. It changes the body’s biochemistry, which increases the odds of developing chronic diseases. One way business owners, especially startup founders, can manage it is through outsourcing. In this setup, entrepreneurs can:
- Delegate repetitive tasks to others so they can free more time for crucial aspects of the business
- Maximize productivity
- Create a team and system that works 24/7 even without their constant supervision
The Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) once reported that many Australian firms choose the country for outsourcing due to:
- Lower labor costs (They usually pay less than half of what they spend in Australia for a particular job.)
- Accessibility of talent (The Philippines produces at least 600,000 college graduates each year.)
- Ability to communicate (Many Filipinos are fluent in English, and several BPO facilities train their people to mimic the accent of their target market.)
Building a business, particularly from the ground up, is rarely easy. Reports even suggest that in a year, only 50% survive. Not surprisingly, many business owners feel stress. But even in the hardest times, solutions are available, such as outsourcing.