Whether you own a small business or have formed a large corporation, the chances are that you delegate specific tasks. A business owner cannot do all things, all the time. Even sole proprietorships often outsource their accounting or tax work to a CPA, and larger companies employ full-time individuals to take on the increased workload.
There are usually three reasons a company or business leader begins to delegate or outsource actions:
- Specialists in particular disciplines or industries are needed to provide advice or long-term help.
- Everyday tasks can be accomplished by an employee or software system rather than the business leader.
- The cost-benefit of employing an outside company or outsourcing to another location outweighs any other inconvenience.
What Should You Delegate?
Once one examines the broad reasons for delegation, it’s essential to drill down into the nitty-gritty and find out what needs to be outsourced. Here are eight questions to ask when deciding if an action needs to be delegated:
1. What is the work only you can do?
Before deciding what can be delegated, it’s important to identify the duties on your plate that only you can accomplish. These are likely the high-level tasks that require your keen intellect and experience to complete.
2. Could others be taught to do this work?
If you are doing work that does not require specialist training or years of experience to complete, it may be time to instruct another person so they can do it. While this may create some extra work on the front end, some of your time will be freed up permanently.
3. How much of your valuable time is being consumed to accomplish the task?
Some small tasks seem like something you can do rapidly, but take up more time than you may think. Additionally, something that started small could blow up into a more massive project. For example, booking a ticket to a conference may seem like something you can handle rapidly until you consider the travel, rental car, hotel, and more that also needs to be booked.
4. Is it a repetitive action that could be automated?
Some daily routine actions can be automated with off the shelf or specialty software. Consider if your repetitive “to-do” needs to be performed by a human – if not, you may be able to hire a software development company to create a solution.
5. Do you have a list of small “to-dos” that seem inconsequential, but end up taking up time?
Some routine tasks really don’t take up much time when considered individually, but if you have several such functions, they may be taking up an hour or so every day. Write down your everyday duties and see if there are minor “to-dos” that can be delegated to add minutes or hours back to your workday.
6. Do you feel unequipped to accomplish this action?
While we often examine small tasks in need of delegation, larger jobs that require specialized training can also be outsourced. For example, you may want to streamline your business. This may be overwhelming and require much study. However, you could save time by hiring an organizational consultant and work with them to get your company streamlined rapidly.
7. Is there a resource or company that could accomplish this task quickly, efficiently, and cheaply?
One reason companies outsource work is to save money. Many companies work strictly business to business support for everything from staffing to software development to marketing. Delegating work to other companies is a great way to get jobs done rapidly and avoid needing to build infrastructure.
8. Does the action disrupt your schedule due to its urgency or how much time it will take to accomplish?
Time-sensitive work that does not require your high-level guidance can be delegated to an assistant or other team members.
Deciding to assign tasks to employees, hire outside help, or outsourcing to other sites is all part of effective business management. Work with us to develop effective management strategies so that every team member and leadership associate utilize their skills most productively. Contact us today to get started with our online business assessment.