There’s one commodity that always seems to be in short supply, with no way to get more of it.
I’m talking about time.
I don’t think I’ve met a small business owner yet who didn’t say something like, “There just aren’t enough hours in the day!”
As far as I can tell, there are only two ways to give you more productive hours each day.
- Slow the rotation of the earth, or
- Learn how to delegate better.
Scientists tell me that slowing the rotation of the earth would have grave consequences, so that really only leaves us with delegating better.
Start by delegating tasks that fall into these five categories:
1. Tasks that have been systemized or are routine.
When you develop systems to accomplish tasks in your small business, it gives you the ability to more easily plug people into those roles.
By the way, you should systemetize even routine tasks. In fact, it’s often more important to hone the systems you use for tasks you do all the time.
Making them more efficient will have a great impact on your business. Also, developing systems is the first step toward automation.
2. Tasks that aren’t your strength.
Wise small business owners know their weaknesses and also recognize the strengths of others.
When people on your team are better at a task than you are, give them the job and then get out of their way.
You get back some of your hours during the day and overall your business will run more smoothly and profitably.
3. Tasks that will boost sales now.
You should be providing the long-term vision and direction for your business.
If there are a few tasks that can be accomplished quickly and will yield an immediate boost to your sales, get someone on those tasks STAT!
4. Tasks that will help employees grow.
This is really a “twofer.” Take something away from yourself and give it to someone who you believe has good growth potential.
This frees up more of your time and eventually sets up your small business to almost “run itself.” If you put the pieces in place that will make your business self-sustaining, you can soon start thinking about your next venture.
5. Tasks you tend to put off.
These can be tasks you don’t like, or don’t view as important enough to take you away from other duties.
When you’re trying to enjoy a barbecue on the patio and there are gnats buzzing around, it becomes less enjoyable, doesn’t it? It’s the same thing with those little tasks that you know you should do, but keep putting off until the proverbial “tomorrow.”
Getting rid of them gets you out from under that cloud. You’ll be re-energized. Also, there may be others in your small business who need you to complete those pesky tasks before they can continue with their work, so delegating them to someone who will “clear the boards” may yield bigger results than expected.
Start doing more, doing less.
We know that small business owners typically put in 55 hour work weeks and honestly that’s not good for your health and in the long term not good for the health of your business.
Renew your commitment to delegate better this year and build a business that can run without you.
What tasks can you delegate? Choose one thing to give up today and develop a plan for how to pass it off.
About the Author: Susan Solovic is THE Small Business Expert. Sign up for Susan’s Success Tips Newsletter and get your free copy of “Smart Marketing Strategies for Small Biz” ebook.