Why You Need to Delegate Responsibilities for Your Business - dummies

Why You Need to Delegate Responsibilities for Your Business

By Consumer Dummies

As a business owner, you’re required to develop skills in many different areas. You need good technical, analytical, and organizational skills, but most important, you also must have good people skills. Of all the people skills, the one skill that can make the greatest difference in your effectiveness is the ability to delegate well. Delegating is the number one management tool, and the inability to delegate well is the leading cause of management failure.

Why do you have a hard time delegating? A variety of possible reasons exist:

  • You’re too busy and just don’t have enough time.

  • You don’t trust your employees to complete their assignments correctly or on time.

  • You’re afraid to let go.

  • You’re concerned that you’ll no longer be the center of attention.

  • You have no one to delegate to (lack of resources).

  • You don’t know how to delegate effectively.

Consider these reasons why you must let go of your preconceptions and inhibitions and start delegating today:

  • Your success depends on it. Business owners who can successfully manage team members — each of whom has specific responsibilities for a different aspect of the team’s performance — are the ones who enjoy the most success.

  • You can’t do it all. No matter how great a manager you are, shouldering the entire burden of achieving your goals isn’t in your best interest unless you want to work yourself into an early grave. Besides, wouldn’t it be nice to see what life is like outside the four walls of your office?

  • You have to concentrate on the jobs that you can do and your staff can’t. You’re the manager — not a software programmer, truck driver, accounting clerk, or customer service representative. Do your job, and let your employees do theirs.

  • Delegation gets workers more involved. When you give employees the responsibility and authority to carry out tasks — whether individually or in teams — they respond by becoming more involved in the day‐to‐day operations of the organization. Instead of acting like drones with no responsibility or authority, they become vital to the success of the business. And if your employees succeed, you succeed.

  • Delegation gives you the chance to develop your employees. If you make all the decisions and come up with all the ideas, your employees never learn how to take initiative and see tasks through to successful completion. And if they don’t learn, guess who’s going to get stuck doing everything forever? In addition, doing everything yourself robs your employees of a golden opportunity to develop their work skills. Today’s employees increasingly report learning and development opportunities as one of the top motivators.

Suppose, for example, that you’re running a health care consulting firm. When the firm had only a few employees and sales of $100,000 a year, it was no problem for you to personally bill all your customers, cut checks to vendors, run payroll, and take care of the company’s taxes every April. However, now you’ve grown to 20 employees and sales are at $3 million a year.

Face it, you can’t even pretend to do it all — you don’t have enough hours in the day. You now have specialized employees who take care of accounts payable, accounts receivable, and payroll, and you have farmed out the completion of income tax work to a CPA.

Each employee that you’ve assigned to a specific work function has specialized knowledge and skills in a certain area of expertise. If you’ve made the right hiring decisions, each employee is a talented and specialized pro in a specific field. Sure, you could personally generate payroll if you had to, but you’ve hired someone to do that job for you. (By the way, your payroll clerk is probably a lot better and quicker at it than you are.)

On the other hand, you’re uniquely qualified to perform numerous responsibilities in your organization. These responsibilities may include developing and monitoring your operations budget, conducting performance appraisals, and helping to plan the overall direction of your company’s acquisitions.