Don't Do It All (Get Someone Else To Do It For You)

August 06, 2015

Delegating for Small Business Success

Are you a charismatic leader? Do you make yourself, and your ideas, the center of attention? Do you plan everything, ensuring that every element is perfect, all the time?

Do you ever get tired?

In our last post, we talked about prioritization, a subset of which involves assigning owners to each task needed to achieve the three organizational goals.

In other words, you need to delegate responsibility. No matter how much pizza a CEO eats, one human being does not scale. One of the most common mistakes made by those in leadership positions is a failure to delegate, or not delegate early enough, or not delegate in a substantive way. If you want to scale your company, empower your employees to perform the tasks you hired them to do.

Empowerment is important: giving employees the tools needed to build and grow helps build and grow your company. Delegation and empowerment are two sides of the same, powerful coin.

“Hire Good People and Leave Them Alone”

Most of us are familiar with this quote from William McKnight, the successful CEO of 3M in the early twentieth century, and familiar with his results.

If you’ve hired trustworthy people with appropriate qualifications and skills, it doesn’t make sense for you to do their jobs. Your job now is to delegate: let those highly capable individuals and teams go for it. They know the goals! Give them some room to breathe and space to run. Empower them by trusting them to do what they do best. It might not be what you would do, but that doesn’t mean it won’t be what you need.

I Have the Power! (And So Do You, and You, and You…)

Think they need your help? Think again.

Recent research shows that an in-your-face management technique tends to produce poorer outcomes with proactive employees. It leads to power struggles, stifling of innovation, lower morale, and less overall motivation.

On the flip side, when you delegate tasks appropriately, you are demonstrating your high expectations. Appropriate delegation, along with tools and space for your employees to succeed, generates empowerment; you can’t delegate successfully if you don’t empower workers to complete tasks. Together, these practices help your employees and your company to grow.

Set those critical goals. Assign them to those who are best suited to complete them. Then stand back and watch your people execute!