In this week’s blog, our CEO and founder, Kieran Phelan explores the art of delegation, breaking it down into five easy steps. Delegation is often a challenge for businesses, whether you are a business owner or indeed a manager in a supervisor capacity. Read on to discover how delegating can transform your work processes and business.
To start the delegation process we must firstly understand who is it that needs delegation as part of their work flow. The other half of the ‘who’ question is looking at ‘who’ is best placed to delegate to. Essentially step one is establishing who can benefit from the process. Say for example, you are a single business owner with no wider team you may think, I am in need of delegation but have no one to delegate to. This isn’t necessarily true, in fact, there are lots of outsourcing options that may help begin your delegation journey. We would suggest considering who can take on delegation for you. For example, lots of small business owners work with us to outsource their finance management, or perhaps you could get help via a virtual assistant or recruit a marketing freelancer to help support your marketing efforts.
Who and what really go hand in hand, we need to understand what needs done in order to put the right person in place to execute the task. Review your to-do list and consider what tasks you need support on. Another approach is to look at what you are doing well and delegate that. Whilst that might feel counter-intuitive, it will in fact improve your processes. If you are in a position where you can teach someone and share knowledge it will foster a culture that encourages delegation and upskilling in the business.
Knowing when to delegate is another essential component in this process. By developing a culture that encourages delegation you can naturally open up those conversations about capacity and learn more about how your team is performing. Establishing who is available and matching those skills to the delegation tasks will help super charge the delegation process.
Effective delegation will free up time, especially if you take a ‘delegating’ rather than ‘dumping’ approach. By investing time in understanding the who, what and when and then having the conversation it will help make the action more successful in the long run. The big picture on this is to help give you more time to work on your business, rather than just in your business. In order to create a sustainable and successful business you must dedicate time on business development. By having delegation as part of the norm in your team / company you can create a challenging, constructive environment where everyone is learning. Equally, as a single agent you will be able to serve your customers better.
There are four stages of delegation and ideally in order to master the art of delegation we eventually want to achieve level four:
i) The task model – this is where you are teaching a process and delegating a straight-forward task explaining a process
ii) The decision making model – going beyond a process, and adding an element whereby the individual has to make some decisions as part of the process which are reported back
iii) The outcome model – building from points 1 and 2 but also incorporating a clear outcome and deadline for a client that the individual will adhere to and report directly to the client on
iv) The Jedi model – this is the top level and a real evolution of the process. This is where a task / action will impact the overall business and include an element of big decisions with a positive outcome that will fit into the bigger picture of the business. At this level, delegating involves someone being responsible for more than the client outcome – they will take responsibility for obtaining customer feedback, gaining marketing material from the work, billing the customer, collecting the payment etc.
In conclusion, you want your business to perform at its best. Delegation will free up time and head space to allow you to concentrate on the big things that will move the needle in your business. Start thinking about your delegation plan today and consider what you can do to start the process.
Contact us to book a discovery call to see how we can help you.