There you are overwhelmed, overworked and frustrated, doing everything by yourself and probably wondering why your business isn’t growing fast enough. You see your to-do list getting longer and longer. How in heaven will you be able to get everything done?
Delegating tasks to some of us “control freaks” can be a daunting task. There is fear of losing control and feel uncomfortable transferring responsibility and tasks we are currently accountable for. I used to be this way.
Many business owners are tempted to do all the work themselves because they somehow think that this is the fastest way to get things done. They want to avoid all the back and forth of having to train someone else to do a job they could very well do.
Inevitably, those who avoid delegation eventually find themselves overworked, overwhelmed and burned out.
As someone in a leadership role, it is your duty to manage people and resources. And without effective delegation, you probably spend more time on numerous small tasks rather than focus on what generates a return on your investment.
If you want your business to thrive, you must recognize that smart delegation is much more productive than doing all the work yourself. No matter what phase of your business you are in, the delegation will support you to grow easier and faster.
What does Smart Delegation involve?
It starts with matching the right person for the job. Remember that not everyone is suited for certain tasks particularly if they require skill. Do think about who on your team has expressed some desire to do more. But do also consider their existing workload and availability.
To delegate confidently, you must prepare. For your team to deliver quality results, the task assigned to them has to have been carefully mapped out. When you convey the information to your team, be clear on expectations, deadlines, context and any other relevant information.
Ask the team member you’ve assigned the task to if they have any questions. Never assume that they will automatically understand your directions. Confirm their understanding of the job that they are now responsible for.
What happens when they get off track, hit a roadblock or a challenge?
Many business owners avoid delegating because they feel that much time is wasted when training or when a team member gets stuck with how to proceed when they are faced with a problem. The thing is, there’s no guarantee that you wouldn’t encounter a similar challenge if you were working on the task yourself.
Instead of asking your team members to simply approach you whenever they have a problem, teach them first to explain the problem and then provide you with at least three solutions. In this way, you are saved from the stress of having to solve the issue yourself, and it helps build the decision-making skills of the employee.
Have the team member present you with the pros and cons of each potential solution and together, you can decide what works best.
Be consistent with this practice by telling team members who approach you with only problems to come back when they have solutions to propose. By doing this, you promote a culture in your business where everyone actively looks for solutions rather than going straight to you with their problems, burdening them with it, and slowing things down.
Get more off your plate by building a team that can support and propel the growth of your business with the smart delegation. What can you start delegating right now?
P.S. Remember, we don’t have to know everything to grow our businesses. A lot of times all we need to do is find the right people to delegate tasks to that can get the job done better and faster than we do. There is a saying I share with my clients “If you are working too much IN your business then you have a glorified job, NOT-a-business. You really have a business when everything runs smoothly without you even being there.”