In our earlier blog post, “How To Grow Your Business in 2020,” we discussed strategies to accelerate your company’s growth. One of the major points we covered was about scale. Specifically, we introduced methods to boost productivity with synthetic scale.
Today’s post covers in more detail how to implement synthetic scale into your small business through proper delegation and systemization. By following these five strategies, you can focus your time on revenue-generating activities, create a more-engaged workforce, and accelerate your firm’s growth.
1. Audit Your Time
If you feel like your wheels are spinning at work and you spend a lot of energy with seemingly nothing to show for it, make it a goal to write down all of the tasks you are working on throughout the day, the week, and the month.
This will yield two big benefits for you as you implement your delegation strategy. The first major benefit is understanding where your “time leaks” occur. For instance, if you find you unconsciously check email or news for five minutes every hour, you just recaptured a full forty minutes each day.
The second benefit of a time audit is to categorize what tasks are revenue and non-revenue generating. Are you spending too much time updating spreadsheets or entering data into your CRM? You now have discovered a routinized task ripe for delegation.
2. Establish Outsourcing Framework
Building a system that works for you and your employees might seem daunting, but start slowly and iterate on what works best for all involved.
We often recommend the responsibility assignment matrix (RACI) to our small business clients. This matrix describes each role or task within a project or assignment. RACI is defined as:
The R party is the individual who completes the task or assignment.
The A party is the person who owns the final deliverable. They are the approver of the final work product.
The C party is a knowledge expert who can provide commentary or opinion on a particular project or task. There is typically two-way communication between the consultant and those responsible or accountable for the task.
The I party is the individual or group who is kept apprised of the progress and completion of the task. There is typically only one-way communication between those needing to be informed and those responsible or accountable for the work.
3. Provide Proper Context
Think of the RACI framework as the instruments and sheet music in your workplace orchestra. Your employees are ready to play, but they need proper guidance from the conductor.
As conductor and leader, your task is to inspire your employee’s commitment to your firm’s vision. Sure, the string section can read the sheet music, but does the cellist understand how their sound fits into your overall opera?
Strong conductors create better music. Your employees will be more engaged if they understand how their individual contributions relate to the overall vision of the firm. Provide proper context for the tasks being delegated, why their work matters, and how they fit into the culture and purpose of your firm’s higher mission.
4. Understand Your Employee (Personality Profiles)
Achieving your firm’s goals is simply impossible if you ignore the emotional needs and communication styles of your coworkers.
We highly recommend implementing personality models with our small employee clients. There’s a wide variety of well-established tests and frameworks from which to choose, such as the Kolbe Personality Test, Enneagram Personality Test, DiSC Personality Test, and Myers-Briggs Type Indicator.
Don’t forget to take the test yourself! It’s important to recognize you are not viewing and communicating with the world through a perfectly clear and objective lens.
5. Take Full Ownership
Undoubtedly, delegation will lead to some failures, particularly early on in the process. Don’t be too quick to pull the plug on this endeavor, though. Try implementing these two steps at the onset to help smooth out the inevitable bumps along the way.
Build In A Time Buffer
As you delegate, keep the phrase “trust but verify” in the back of your mind when you shift tasks to your employees. This invariably means you will need additional time, both to provide instruction and context but also to check the work product before it’s client-ready.
Build enough of a time buffer at the front- and back-end of the task to instruct, review, and assess. Eventually, this feedback loop will reduce the extra hours needed, but only after careful mentoring.
Never Take It Back
A quick temptation when delegating is to say, “They did it wrong — going forward I’ll just do it myself.” Don’t fall into this trap! Treat your delegated tasks like Hernán Cortés treated his ships. The task is no longer yours — what needs to happen now to ensure it’s completed correctly?
Small Business Planning with Harbor Crest Wealth Advisors
Proper delegation is a powerful tool for you, your employees, and your firm. You can focus on what matters most, such as business development and client relationships. Your employees buy into the firm’s mission while expanding their skill sets, and your firm leverages synthetic scale to improve efficiency and accelerate growth.
To learn more about how Harbor Crest Wealth Advisors can help you implement a successful delegation strategy within your business, contact us today.