Strong Leaders Delegate
By : Ken Paskins -
As a leader, one of the most important components is to effectively delegate tasks. Understanding how and when to delegate is often overlooked by the leadership team. Let’s discuss why and how to overcome the hesitation with delegating. As a leader you are busy, you have built a strong team. By delegating, you give them the space they need to succeed.
What happens when leaders don’t delegate
The problem begins at the very beginning – in the formation of the business. When you have only a few employees, everything goes through the owner or the CEO. From organizing catered lunches to paying invoices, complete oversight becomes a difficult crutch to release due to control issues. Unfortunately, by completely relying on one individual to make all the decisions and do most of the work, your network of employees will never grow. You have to ask yourself, “Why do I not delegate?”.
Ask yourself “Is it because I fear losing control?” “Or is it because I do not trust my people?” “Is it something else? Answering these questions is critical to the establishment of a delegation plan.
Delegating is a huge component in your company. Your strength as a leader is not in what you can do yourself; it is what you can produce through each member of your team. Picture yourself as a general in an army. A general is absolutely critical in any battle or war. They provide strategy. They ensure execution. They are accountable for all the moving pieces of the military. However, they are not the people on the ground, attacking the enemy. They are not going to play in the band, nor are they going to deliver mortar shells. A leader’s job is to operate as a general. Here is a great article from Harvard Business Journal which lays out how critical this is.
When you hired your team, trust and ability to the job they were hired for was the reason you hired them. Delegation creates a more productive environment; your team knows you trust them. Progress and growth happen more quickly when you delegate more.
How to Delegate
If you find yourself struggling to delegate, the reason is often your own refusal to let go of some control. I have found this tool I’ve found useful is one developed for EOS® ( entrepreneurial operating system), created by Gino Wickman. This tool, delegate and elevate, is straightforward. Picture four quadrants. In the upper right is “like it/good at it”, in the upper left “love it/great at it”. In the lower left is “don’t like it/good at it” and in the bottom right, “don’t like it/not good at it”. For each task you do yourself, evaluate whether or not you enjoy it and whether or not you consider yourself to be good at it. Each task can be placed in its respective quadrant. The top two quadrants will be the tasks to keep for yourself, while the bottom two are tasks that should be delegated. Not only will this decrease your workload, but it will make your day more enjoyable.
More on Delegation
I recently discussed this topic with Mark Winters from EOS®. We expand on the significance of the “delegate and elevate” method in company growth. You can watch the interview here.
If you are truly committed to taking your company to the next level, the answer is not in yourself – it is in delegating the right tasks to the right people. Hone the tasks that you like and excel at and delegate those that you dislike or find difficult, then watch your company grow. Contact us for an assessment and help you learn how to delegate and help guide your team.