You are currently viewing Why You Have to Start Delegating and How You Can Start Today

Why You Have to Start Delegating and How You Can Start Today

I get it – you started this business alone, and you’ve done it all. You’ve been the CEO, marketer, salesperson, copywriter, secretary, maybe even the manufacturer. You know you can do it right, so you’re reluctant to let things go. Even if you get a second pair of hands on board, they refer to you to make every single decision. 

But… you can’t grow that way. Not forever, at least, and not with the quality of work-life balance you deserve. 

It’s time to learn to become an effective leader who can delegate tasks, trust the right people to make the right decisions, so you can focus on what moves the needle for your business, whether that be executing a service or planning the big picture marketing. 

Why Delegate? 

Delegating isn’t just giving tasks to other people, though that certainly is a part of it. Delegation is also learning to put the right people in the right roles and allowing them to make key decisions about the work they do. If you’re micromanaging all your freelancers, contractors, or employees, you’ve simply got more hands – you’re not delegating. 

5 Tips to Become a Better Delegator Today 

  1. Figure Out Why You Aren’t Delegating Effectively Now 

Be honest, is it because you’re really the only person who can do the job, or are you just unwilling to let it go? Most entrepreneurs have an ego – and that’s okay, that’s what makes us so willing to lead businesses and take big and daring leaps, but it can also lead us to keep things small. 

You worry the people you delegate to won’t make the right decisions, that it will take too long to train them, or maybe you think you can’t afford to delegate tasks. 

Whatever the reason, it’s likely not truly the case. Other people will make the right decisions if you choose people with the right attitude or skillset, who are willing to learn, if you empower them with the ability to make their own decisions, and if you train them to follow your processes. (Note that I say follow your processes and not “ask you what to do next”.) 

Spend a few minutes now being honest with yourself about why you’ve yet to delegate the work you don’t personally have to do to others. 

  • Figure Out What to Delegate and What You Want to Do 

It can be overwhelming to decide which tasks to delegate to other team members, but you just need to consider what will be most effective for time management. Take a few minutes to list all the tasks that need to be done to keep your business running. (A task list, not a to-do list.) Then mark the tasks as follows: 

  • The tasks you love doing 
  • The tasks you have the expertise to do 
  • The tasks that have to be done, but don’t energize you 
  • The tasks you enjoy doing, but other people could do better in less time (be honest) 
  • Tasks someone else could do 
  • Tasks you hate doing 

Anything you love doing and have the expertise to do can stay on your plate, the rest can, and likely should be, delegated to other people to save you time or because they’ll do a better job than you. 

  • Create a System for Delegation 

Do not make a manual. Manuals are a huge time-suck and don’t allow for extenuating circumstances. If you outline every step of a process and the decision the employee should make, you’ll be swamped with “but what about…” questions. 

Instead, identify some of the tasks that could be easily delegated and completed by someone else and give them the tools and the knowledge to execute on that task. Allow them to make key decisions. 

If the tasks are fairly simple, try a project management tool like Trello, [link:], Monday, [link:], or Asana [link:] to manage your team. Simply upload a task and your basic instructions, some context, and any necessary guidance and assign them to a team member. Allow them to come to you with questions, but try to encourage them to try on their own, first. 

The key here is to know that these systems will need tweaking and your team will need training. Seek out people who always do their best and want to succeed over people who have a ton of experience. While experience is never a bad thing, experienced people will already have a set way of doing something, and you’re unlikely to change that. 

  • Check-ins

If you’re happy to be hands-off and let people take control, this is a step that – if missed – often leads to confusion, miscommunication, and added stress. 

You do not want to pester your team, but you also need to know where things are at in the pipeline, or you’ll feel in the dark. In addition to setting up a system so you can see at a glance if a project or task is in progress, ask for an end-of-day check-in. 

That way you’ll know if they’ll hit any set deadlines or if they’re struggling and need help. 

  • Give Team Members the Resources They Need

It’s often tempting when you first start delegating to only give team members access to the few parts of your business they need to complete the one task, and come to you to ask for anything else. While this is fine when you’re first testing out a virtual team member, any employee needs your trust. 

When your employees and team members know you trust them, they’ll feel motivated and empowered, and will be more productive and find the work they do more fulfilling. Finally, while you should encourage them to make their own decisions, you should always let them come to you when they need to, and you should never punish them for making the wrong decision. If they tried, even if they got it wrong, they did something right. You don’t want extra hands, you want extra brains, so empower your team to take ownership of the work they do for you and you’ll soon free up your time to work on what matters most.

Leave a Reply