A Google search will tell you that delegation is the action or process of delegating or being delegated.
Delegation in management is simply handing over or giving tasks to another person in your team to complete. When you delegate, you free up time for yourself as a leader to do more strategic or higher-level tasks.
From the beginning, God delegated the care of the garden of Eden to man in the creation story. Delegation is as old as the beginning of time.
When should a business owner start delegating tasks?
As a small business owner myself, I understand the need to wear all the hats when you are just starting out. However, I have found that in order to grow, it becomes highly important to delegate tasks.
So, when should you start delegating tasks?
When you find you are spending so much time on tasks that while they are important, they are not the core of your business.
When tasks are repetitive, you might find you can easily delegate these tasks.
When your business can afford it. There are some aspects of a business that you need to delegate from the very start, like hiring an accountant, but other specialist services can wait until you can afford the costs of hiring or outsourcing those tasks.
You no longer have time to be with your family, do your hobbies or simply relax. You are spending every waking minute on your business but are not getting any growth.
You have tasks you do not enjoy doing. There is someone out there who loves what you don’t enjoy.
Tasks that while you can do them, others can do them better than you can.
To delegate effectively
Be very clear about what you want to achieve. Your team members need to know your goal. The easiest way to do this is to have a process written down on how your goal can be achieved. You may also want to set timelines and deadlines for each task. It might be helpful for your team to also know why they are doing the task and if there are any interdependencies.
Provide training. One of the easiest ways to do this is to create all the training in advance or when needed. All training should be stored where team members can access it at any time they need it. Training should be comprehensive but not too long. If using videos, I recommend short videos explaining steps and processes.
Provide resources and tools your team members will need to complete the assigned tasks.
Make room for errors/mistakes. As humans, we are likely to fail at one time or another, especially if it’s a new task. Be patient and encourage your team if and when failure happens. Let them know what they can do to improve. If you are not happy with the outcome, let your team know. Most team members want to do a good job, so it is important they are made aware if they did not meet your expectations.
Give ownership, do not micromanage. I don’t think I have met anyone who loves to be micromanaged. Most team members, once there are clear on what they need to do, love to get stuck in on the task and use their initiative, skills and knowledge to give a great outcome.
Give room to your team to give you feedback about your processes, your leadership and if there are any changes they believe could help your company improve.
Celebrate your team. When you achieve your goals, celebrate with your team as you couldn’t have done it without their support. Praise your team members for their hard work. This keeps their morale high and helps them do more for your business.
Delegation doesn’t just help you, it helps others to grow. When you delegate effectively, you are building others up.
I serve entrepreneurs and small businesses as an Online Business Manager. I serve by creating systems/processes and automation to ensure your business runs smoothly. I work strategically with business owners to grow and scale their businesses.