“I’m awesome! Who can do a better job than me?” Where have I heard this before?!?
Let’s get down to basics, if you are a small business owner, you can not do everything, nor should you. Because you are uncertain that delegated work will be done to your standard, you cannot move on to new tasks .. and that gets you no where!
You have to learn how to let go and to train your team to do your usual tasks. Don’t forget, your team includes your contractors, assistants (virtual, or otherwise), bookkeepers & accountants and anyone else you pay to help you stay productive.
Delegating will help you create the time to manage your company and relief some of the pressure to do everything yourself. By delegating effectively, productivity will increase. A leader that can delegate will motivate the team. It will give everyone involved in the business the chance to excel and will help the company to meet and perhaps even surpass expectations.
Owners of businesses sometimes feel uncomfortable with assigning tasks – a barrier to delegate because it is them that will be held accountable for the results. Carter McNamara, a MBA and PhD graduate, once explained that delegating involves working alongside an employee to set goals and then to grant them adequate authority and accountability to achieve these goals. This will also mean granting them the freedom of decision on how to accomplish these goals. The delegator has to remain available as a source to aid the achievement of these goals. He or she also has to do a quality assessment of the effort and the achievement of these goals. The delegator must also address issues with performance and if needed, reward the performance.
Some business owners won’t delegate. Some of their reasons as well as ways to handle them are:
There isn’t time to delegate.
To train takes time, but to delegate repetitive everyday jobs and train others to complete those tasks will compensate for that in future. Don’t be afraid; step up to the challenge.
Using YouTube videos as tutorial guides is a great way to get started. Be sure to cross train your team, if you have more than one handy helper. Bottom line, if you want to save your sanity, then you need to invest some time in onboarding those you delegate to.
They will leave once they are trained.
Yes, turnover might be a concern for many businesses, but those who are engaged in their tasks will probably stay with the company. If they aren’t committed to partnering with you, then why do you want to partner with them?
You can complete the job superior to anyone else.
Bingo! We have a winner! This is true but you need to relinquish control and delegate. With sufficient experience and training, your assistant can do this on your behalf. Then you can use the extra time to handle fresh, diverse or more profitable tasks. Plus, we can often add creativity and an original perspective.
You enjoy undertaking it.
That is good, but if time wasn’t an issue, won’t there be more gratifying tasks to do? Pinpoint where your skillset will add the most value and then delegate all the tasks that prevent you from doing it.
We are too busy to take on any more tasks.
Have a good look at the results and ask the question: do all the tasks create results? Tasks created to serve a specific purpose are often continued, even after the issue was resolved. Eliminate such non-productive tasks.
You’re afraid you might lose control.
Winner Winner, Chicken dinner!! The complete responsibility for the results will always come down to the business owner. The personnel must therefore give feedback. You must measure the created products.
Start slowly and delegate tasks that are repetitive. Give the resources and information that is essential to finish. Provide the necessary training. Once results are achieved, ascertain if there are other areas where delegation can also be done.
I’ve often said this, and I’ll say it again:
Take it slow. Baby steps slow. Build on it. Then we’ll rock!
About Out of the Office Virtual Assistance:
At Out of the Office, we offer ideas and ways to increase your productivity, decrease your workload, and work more efficiently. We nurture a successful business relationship, while continuing to grow as your business partner. We are focused on streamlining your administration, social media planning and execution, and offering creative solutions for your business success.
Image Credit: geralt | CCO Public Domain