As an entrepreneur, it can be tempting to try do it all yourself. Your business is your brainchild, your passion project, your reason to get up in the morning. It makes sense that you’d want to oversee every aspect of your business.
But you need to see the big picture. If you’re trying to do everything on your own, from creative work to copy writing to advertising to production, you’re going to burn out, hard. Just because you can do it all doesn’t mean you should.
By now in your business, you’ve built a team. You need to rely on them to make the magic happen. Delegating can be difficult, but it’s absolutely worth it.
Here are 4 ways to start delegating in your team to boost your productivity.
Make Priorities Clear
The first step to successfully delegating in your team is to make sure everyone is on the same page. Your priorities as a business will dictate everything. A good way to figure out your priorities is to develop a strong company culture. Your team members should know what type of behavior is valued by you and the business, and work to embody those values.
Your priorities can change, as well. For example, as your team grows, you might want to focus more on training. As you receive customer feedback, customer experience could become a priority. It all depends on what the business needs, and you need to work to communicate that with your team so everyone knows what you expect of them.
A good way to help set those expectations is to set goals. Inc.com reports that “More than 80 percent of the 300 small business owners surveyed in the recent 4th Annual Staples National Small Business Survey said that they don’t keep track of their business goals, and 77 percent have yet to achieve their vision for their company.”
There’s absolutely a correlation there. It can be overwhelming to think about giving each team member direct short and long term goals, but it’s crucial for your business success. Don’t get intimidated! Instead, start breaking things down.
First, think about the big picture. What do you want your business to look like in 5 years? Then, think about in one year. Identify what exactly needs to happen in the meantime to reach those goals. Then, set a monthly business goal, and do the same thing: set small, manageable steps to get there.
By giving each member of your team weekly and monthly goals, they will understand their larger role on your team. This will give them confidence and purpose, as well as let you rest easy knowing your team understands your expectations.
Speaking of building confidence, you absolutely need to check in with individuals in your team. This might seem counterintuitive since we’re talking about delegating, but checking in builds trust and trust builds stronger results. CIPHR says, “If employees feel trusted then they’ll feel less compelled to ask you to check their progress, meaning fewer pauses in productivity while awaiting your approval.”
Ironically, the way to get to this more productive place is to set aside time, at first. If your team is small enough, schedule a weekly chat with each employee to check in on their projects. If that’s not possible with the size of your business, have your managers do so with their teams and report highlights back to you.
This isn’t about micromanaging, it’s about making lasting connections with your team. Keep these meetings short and productive; you can discuss the aforementioned goals, a skill they are developing, or a recent hiccup in a project. This will build trust between you and your team, and can help circumvent future issues before they can develop. By letting your team know they have a line to communicate with you, and a set time to do so, they will feel valued. This will lead to, again, more confidence and the ability to work independently.
Outsource what’s left
So, you’ve made priorities clear, outlined short term and long term goals for your team, and built trust. Your operations should be running smoothly, and you should be feeling good about your personal workload.
Unfortunately, that might not always be the case. There’s still a lot of work your business needs to succeed. Marketing efforts, creative outreach, reception, and customer service are all areas that are crucial for your business success but often get overlooked.
There’s good news: all of these areas can be very easily outsourced. Flatworld Solutions reports that outsourcing has “benefits ranging from low cost labor, improved quality to product and service innovation”. Now more than ever, businesses are taking advantage of the global workplace to get the best freelancers to help their business.
Delegating at work doesn’t have to be difficult. By making your priorities clear, setting concrete goals, periodically checking in, and outsourcing select tasks, you will boost productivity. Get started to highly elevate your quality of business.