Dare to Delegate – 5 Steps to Effective Delegation in Your Small Business

As a small business owner, you put all your effort into building your business and breathing life into your dream. You’re responsible for managing the website, promoting content, developing marketing campaigns, handling clients, and other day-to-day tasks. This can become overwhelming quickly, but many small business owners are reluctant to ask for help.

Entrepreneurs try to do it all, but that’s not the most effective use of your time, nor is it the best choice for your business. Effective delegation is vital to leadership and business success. Whether you’re on the hunt for small business IT support or looking to streamline your team’s workflow, these five steps to effective delegation can help your organization run like a dream. 

5 Steps to Effective Delegation in Your Small Business

Step 1: Identify Your Tasks

Some tasks can be delegated and some can’t. As an owner and leader, it’s important to understand and identify these tasks. For example, you may want to handle all those that involve sensitive information or are mission-critical or ill-defined. The general best practice is to delegate less-essential tasks to others.

Step 2: Select the Delegate

Next, it’s time to find the right person to complete the task. You know your employees and their abilities better than anyone—after all, you hired them! Naturally, you must choose the employees with the appropriate skill sets, but you should also consider other traits like attention to detail, loyalty, availability, diligence, and past performance. 

Before making a selection, discuss the project needs with the staff members or freelancers you’re considering to make sure they understand, they’re up for the challenge, and they will represent you and your business well. From there, you can choose the best person for the job.

Step 3: Clearly Define Each Task

Provide documentation that clearly outlines the task or project and any supporting resources. The employee working on the assignment needs a clear, in-depth understanding of the work and your expectations, and they must also know how much authority they have to make decisions that can affect the outcome.

Step 4: Provide Support

If you’ve chosen well, your delegate has the knowledge, skills, and information needed to perform the task to your standards. Still, a good leader offers guidance and support throughout the process. 

Providing support while empowering your employee can be a balancing act. Before the task begins, have a training session or meeting to discuss the details and expectations and answer any questions. Make it clear that you’re trusting them to take on this project, but you’re available to provide support and guidance if they need it. 

Step 5: Monitor and Review

Challenges are part of doing business. Your delegate or project team may come up against hurdles in the process and may need your guidance, so make sure you’re available. You should be monitoring and reviewing the project as it develops and checking in to see how things are going. 

That said, don’t micromanage. Micromanaging disempowers your employees, adds more work for you, and defeats the purpose of delegation. Instead of hovering over their work or insisting that all decisions must go through you, check in periodically and ask for updates and feedback from your delegates. 

Embrace Delegation for Business Success

Delegation becomes increasingly important as your business scales. You can’t take on every project by yourself, nor are you the best person for every task. Delegating frees up your time for mission-critical tasks and gives your employees accountability and empowerment in their own roles. While delegation can be challenging for a leader with an entrepreneurial spirit, the earlier you start delegating, the better prepared you’ll be as your business grows and your workload increases.

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