There are so many moving parts in running a business. From conception to launch to maintaining and scaling your operation, there are many things to oversee to ensure productivity, efficiency, and growth. And one thing successful business owners can agree on is that you can’t do it all on your own. You need a team.
Additionally, when you create a solid team for your business, you must know how to utilize your team effectively. Each team member has a set of strengths you can leverage to optimize your operation. But there will also be times where automating certain practices or doing specific tasks yourself is a better choice.
So the question becomes when you’re starting a business or reevaluating your business plans, when is it best to delegate tasks, complete them yourself, or implement automation tools to help?
Let’s dive into each in detail so you can make an informed decision as to how to complete different business tasks in the most efficient, productive way.
When You Should Delegate Tasks
Most business owners find out very quickly that they can’t do everything themselves as much as they wish they could. At the same time, they’re terrified of assigning essential tasks to individuals on their team. It could be because the last time they did, the tasks weren’t done to their quality standards or done at all. Whatever the reason, they’re stuck in limbo between burning themselves out and being unable to use their team efficiently.
But delegation is an absolute must if you want to run a successful business. There are people with better ability and knowledge on specific tasks than you. And that’s okay. In fact, it’s encouraged. These team members can ensure the tasks get done in the most efficient way possible that garners the best results. Delegating tasks shows your team that you trust their abilities to get the job done, which is extremely important to creating a solid company culture.
So, how do you know which tasks to delegate and who they should be delegated to? By understanding the strengths of each person on your team, considering the time you have to complete these tasks, the complexity of the tasks, and if they can be handed off without issue.
To determine who the task should be delegated to, start with the people on your team who have always wanted more responsibility and who can handle it. You’ll still want to create an outline on how the task should be completed and monitor progress. But you want to monitor your team in a way that is cost-effective, improves team performance, and recognizes and celebrates team productivity. Don’t create more work for yourself by delegating so many tasks that monitoring becomes a task in itself.
In addition to delegating tasks, you can automate many so you and your team can focus on projects that really need you.
When to Implement Automation Tools
You and your team members each have a set of primary job responsibilities. But because there are so many things that go into running a business, as stated above, those responsibilities can often become secondary to the many repetitive, menial tasks you must complete to keep things running smoothly.
Fortunately, we now have a wide variety of automation tools to choose from to help complete those repetitive tasks for us. Many business owners find that automating these sorts of tasks frees up their team’s time to focus on their primary responsibilities and tasks that require a human touch.
For example, collecting data can be overwhelming when done manually. Implementing an automation tool that collects and processes data for you leaves more time to focus on the analysis part and leverage the data insights to better your business.
But how do you know when to implement automation tools? Automation is excellent for accurately and efficiently completing repetitive tasks like responding to emails or comments and direct messages on social media, data collection, or customer-service inquiries. Additionally, it’s important to note that automating a task doesn’t mean set it and forget it. You must ensure the tool works how it’s supposed to and make adjustments when it’s not.
Finally, some tasks can be best completed by you, where automation and delegation just won’t cut it. And that brings us to our last section.
When to Get Things Done Yourself
As much as delegating and automation can help better business efficiency and productivity, there are just some tasks that only you can complete. In other words, your expertise, skill, experience, and background may make you the best fit for completing a particular task.
For example, suppose you have a financial background in accounting, and no one else on your team has the level of expertise you do. In that case, it’s probably best to complete the accounting and other financial tasks yourself. Bookkeeping, financial planning, investing, and financial reporting are all things you want to be done by an expert. And if that expert is you, it’s best to take on these tasks yourself to ensure they’re done correctly.
Also, when it comes to DIY, don’t just look at your ability to do something, but also look at whether or not your current responsibilities will allow you to designate the time and effort needed to complete the task. If you’ve got too many things on your plate to produce high-quality work, it may be best to explore one of the above options to ensure you aren’t on a fast track to burnout.
Ultimately, there is a time and a task for delegation, automation, and DIY. Delegate tasks when someone else is better equipped to complete them. Automate tasks that are repetitive and can be done with little human intervention. And complete tasks yourself when you have the time and effort to dedicate to them, and your expertise makes you the right fit for the job.