One of the most common management problems faced by entrepreneurs is learning to let go.
The reason why is understandable, most people start their business off on their own, before you know it your business dominates most parts of your day to day life and you get used to doing things that meet your own personal standards. It is only as a business begins to grow that you might find you need to consider taking other people on to relieve the pressure…But how can you trust them to do things ‘your way’ when you are not actually there?…
The answer first up is of course ensuring you have trustworthy people to delegate too, however, in order to find trustworthy people, you must also learn trust.
The result? The more you let go, the more your business thrives.
Here are some ways to nurture that trust and start letting go…
Be clear about expectations. Give people the best chance of getting ‘it’ right by defining clearly what you want to achieve, provide examples of the finished product so you know they have an example of the standard you expect them to aim for.
Record procedures and processes. It can be hard to put onto paper the way you want someone to complete a task. Instead try using visual examples. This is especially useful when it comes to repetitive work that generally follows a similar procedure. Record the procedure you follow, talking through the steps as you go. A great free screen recorder is A Powersoft (https://www.apowersoft.com/free-online-screen-recorder) – using this method also means the person you delegate too can retrace their steps and watch back as many times as necessary to ensure they have totally understood what you are wanting them to achieve, while giving you peace of mind that the outcome will look the same as the one you recorded.
Don’t expect people to be mind-readers. Be clear as to why you want someone to do something a certain way. People don’t always think like you and may not understand that not doing something in a specific way could cause lots of hassle for the rest of the team later down the line. Clearly outline the impact of not doing something correctly, the knock on effects and why you want things doing a certain way so they understand the consequences.
Give Feedback. Especially important in the early days, but even over longer lengths of time offering regular feedback to the people you delegate too means they know what they are doing right, and wrong and how they can improve. It might also be worth thinking about offering incentives to reward people who are consistently getting things right, not only does this reward those who try their best but it also shows the rest of the team examples of work that has been done well.
Hire people that are better than you. ‘Jack of all trades master of none’ Okay… maybe not master of none, clearly you know what you are doing to have scaled your business to the level that you need an extra pairs of hands in the first place, but it’s pretty much a guarantee that some tasks aren’t going to be playing to your major strengths. When you started out, you had no choice but to wear all the hats, but whether it’s finance, social media management, web design, marketing or the implementation of new systems, there are bound to be people out there who know more about specific areas of business than you do. Hiring people with key expertise can be the turning point that pushes your business forward to a whole new level.
When it comes to making tough decisions, many leaders think they need to take care of things themselves, BUT if you stop trying to hang on with both hands, and accept that trusting others will not just make your life simpler but your business can become bigger and better thanks to the shared vision you hold with your new team.