As a business owner, delegation can often be a challenging skill to master; however, it is essential for business growth. This week I will highlight three stages of delegation that can help you free up valuable time. No matter where you currently stand on your delegation journey, evaluating and planning the proper hand-off is the key. Understanding the specific stage for each area will empower you to work smarter, not harder, and make significant progress toward achieving your goals.
Before we dive in, it’s crucial to remember an essential aspect of delegation: think outside the box. When it comes to delegating tasks, there are numerous options beyond the obvious choices of assigning them to existing team members or hiring new employees. You have the flexibility to delegate to various alternatives, such as professional service providers (like a bookkeeper), subcontractors, or virtual assistants.
Now onto the 3 stages of delegation:
Stage – 1 – Delegating Tasks
At the first stage, you’re basically giving tasks to your team members. Most business owners and leaders find this level easy to follow. You just hand out specific jobs to people, like Jason, Mary, Adam, and Elizabeth, and then they go do their thing. You’re the main point of contact and decision-maker at this stage.
But, honestly, this approach may not fully tap into your team’s potential. It also requires a lot of your energy to make sure everything gets done properly.
Stage – 2 – Delegating responsibility for specific areas of business
Now, moving up to the second stage of delegation, things get exciting! When done right, it can really free you up from lots of follow-up work. At this stage, it’s not just about handing out tasks anymore. Instead, you’re giving your team members ownership of specific areas in the business. They take charge and handle ongoing responsibilities.
For example, you might entrust Jason with a particular aspect of the business and say, ‘Jason, this area is yours to lead. It’s your ongoing responsibility.’ Then, Jason might pass some tasks to Elizabeth, creating a back-and-forth partnership between them. Similarly, you could assign Mary with functional ownership of certain business areas. She, in turn, might delegate tasks to Adam and Kevin, creating a network of ownership and delegation.
With this approach, communication becomes more diverse and inclusive, as team members interact and collaborate with each other. You won’t be the sole source of information anymore; instead, you’ll be a facilitator of effective teamwork. With a bit of practice, you can go from spending 60 hours a week managing tasks and projects to just twenty or thirty, giving you more time for other things you love!
Stage – 3 – Ownership
The highest level of delegation is all about giving your team members a strong sense of ownership and responsibility. Here, you empower them to take charge of different parts of the business, with less involvement from you. It’s when your business becomes truly yours, not the other way around.
At this stage, you might give Jason, Mary, and Adam significant responsibilities for various aspects of the business. The relationships become more collaborative, and they can make decisions on their own. For example, Jason and Mary might team up on certain projects without needing your help. They have the power to make decisions that benefit the company.
As your business grows, you might bring in new team members, like Andy, who will take charge of additional areas. This sharing of responsibilities creates a strong and proactive team spirit.
As a business owner and leader, mastering delegation and ownership is crucial for success. Understanding the three stages of delegation allows you to progress from just giving tasks to empowering your team with ownership and responsibility. By reaching the highest stage of delegation, you’ll build a strong and independent team that can take your business to new heights.
Best of luck on your unique journey
– Burak Sarac, Team Lead
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