Taking the PlungeMonday, 13 February 2012 14:15
Letting go and embracing delegation in your start-up
Letting go and embracing delegation
When you first start a new venture, it's typical that one or two people are responsible for everything – from top level tasks like setting company goals and strategies, to day-to-day items that still need to be done.
While it can be challenging balancing everything that requires your time, it's also easy to get used to having total control, especially if you set high standards for your business.
So as we've added a couple of staff members lately, a new challenge has presented itself – letting go of some control and delegating tasks effectively. I've often fallen into the trap of thinking it's easier to just do things yourself, but in the past few weeks I've been embracing the power of sharing the work around.
There are a few things to work on to make this all a bit easier. Firstly, being organised ahead of time and working out the best tasks for your staff to work on will make the process a lot smoother.
It's hard to work this out when they are sitting opposite you asking what needs to be done, so dedicating some time when you are organising your own task list to outlining what needs to be delegated is a good place to start.
Next up you need to make sure that you give clear direction and training, again putting in the required prep work to ensure someone new can get on and complete the task without a lot of intervention. It's a lot less stressful for your employees if they know exactly what's expected of them, without you looking over their shoulder every five minutes.
In the end it's about trusting your staff and their abilities. There's a reason you hired them in the first place, and often they are more skilled than you in their area of responsibility, so let them get on with the job, and even if they make a few mistakes this is the best way for them to learn.
In the long run, your staff will grow and develop better if they have clear expectations placed on them, and you give them the confidence and support to do their best.
Mark Campbell is the director for web strategy at Shooii, a retail start-up that is launching very soon. Mark is passionate about branding, innovation and creating a positive company culture. He shares the highs and lows of planning a new business for StartupSmart.
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