Do you waste your time on pointless activities? I’m not talking about social media or hours in front of the TV. I’m talking about all of the tasks and activities you spend your time completing when you don’t need to be the one doing them. If you are not currently delegating any of your tasks, you are likely wasting a lot of your precious time. As a busy business owner, time is probably the last thing you want to waste! So which excuse is holding you back from delegating?
Not Knowing What to Delegate
Many people refrain from delegating tasks simply because they do not know what they should be delegating. The key is to recognize the activities that are not maximizing your success. For example, if you need to wear clean, ironed shirts to work every day, you probably drop them off at the dry cleaners every Friday and pick them up every Monday. That’s two times per week you’re running errands instead of working on your business. Can you have an assistant handle your dry cleaning instead? Or maybe a local dry cleaner offers affordable pick-up and delivery? Workable solutions are usually at your fingertips. Stop committing to and engaging in such unskilled activities and instead, put them on someone else’s plate.
You should also delegate skilled activities that don’t make the best use of your time. Do you spend an hour preparing to lead a weekly team meeting but are aware that you not efficient at it? If you struggle to start and end meetings on time and have a hard time keeping them focused, your greatest contribution to meetings may be your expertise and experience alone. Delegate someone else to prepare for and facilitate meetings if that is their strength. By minimizing your weaknesses, you’ll be able to capitalize on others’ strengths as well as your own.
You may believe it’s more cost effective to complete tasks yourself but that’s not always the case. You need to consider not only the initial monetary cost but also the opportunity cost, especially when it comes to specialized tasks requiring education-based knowledge or involving a unique skill set such
as bookkeeping, graphic design, blog and video editing, and marketing. According to Jeff Shore, “Too many business owners impede their revenue growth doing everything just to save a few bucks.”
You may save money in the short term by completing specialized tasks on your own, but the outcome in the long term is often better when such tasks are completed by a more qualified person. Sure, you can develop your own website and design your own logo. The vortex of DIY videos online has made completing just about any task possible on your own, but that doesn’t mean you should. A highly-qualified professional would likely create your website with more creative graphics, easier navigation, better site words, and more plug-ins, thus drawing many more clients to choose you over your competition. Specialized tasks are excellent opportunities to delegate to skilled labor.
Lack of Qualified Labor
Like many successful business owners, you may think you’re the only person qualified to do certain work. That may be true, but it doesn’t have to be. Heather Nunez said her motto for delegating is “Move it from my To-Do List to their To-Learn List.” Brilliant! For you to invest your best time into your best activities, you have to invest in others. Teaching capable employees how to complete skilled tasks frees up your time and empowers them with more responsibilities, thus increasing their purpose and job security. Also, tasks that feel like burdens to you, could feel like blessings to them. What you’re delegating may not be your best activities, but may be theirs.
Time is a finite resource so how you choose to use it is of utmost importance. If you are kept busy by tasks that are not bringing you closer to achieving your goals, delegating is the obvious choice. Delegating tasks that can be completed by others is essential to increasing your productivity because it frees up your best time for your best activities. Determine what to delegate so you can focus on your highest value activities and work toward achieving your goals and vision of success.
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