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Most entrepreneurs start out as solopreneurs, responsible for everything from marketing and product development to accounting. Those who choose the entrepreneurial path believe in themselves and their ability to wear many different hats. They are comfortable being the architects of their own success.
However, every entrepreneur reaches the point where if they want to continue with the business, they must take new appointments and delegate certain aspects of the business. For entrepreneurs who are used to working on their own, giving up control can be a challenging transition.
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But the alternative is worse: If an entrepreneur is constantly wrapped up in the mundane day-to-day operations of the business, they may not have the opportunity to completely take a step back, think about things from a macro level, and come to the fore. Is. To move forward successfully with new ideas and strategies. Most entrepreneurs, for better or for worse, feel capable of doing many different tasks. And while that confidence can be what drives someone to go into business for themselves in the first place, it can also create blind spots.
Entrepreneurs, regardless of what stage their business is in, must be prepared to ultimately democratize decision-making and delegate work to their employees. The arguments in favor of doing so fall in three broad areas:
1. Better Results
Delegating day-to-day work to the people who are closest to the action – either those who are most knowledgeable about a given topic or those with the most direct contact with customers or end-users – make better-informed decisions Receive and create more value for the organization. Allowing employees to make decisions about the areas they are responsible for, frees up time for entrepreneurs to spend on strategy and other value-added business matters.
However, empowering employees is not simply delegating decision-making authority; It’s also about setting them up for success. In order to make the best decisions, employees need to understand the desired business outcome and the context in which the decisions will be made. They also need proper training. Entrepreneurs, in short, need to create a culture of trust – a culture based on the idea that employees will make better decisions if they understand how value is created. Everyone within the business, not just the founder or top employees, needs to align with its core value streams.
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The second advantage delegation offers is speed. The fewer people involved in reviewing and approving decisions, the less “bottleneck” there is and the faster an organization can move forward. This is especially true for businesses in the service industry, where empowering employees to tackle issues at the grassroots level directly and in real time can mean the difference between a happy or dissatisfied customer. But today speed and agility are paramount in all industries. Quick decisions made by those with access to the most relevant information take less time to market or have a faster pivot, which can mean the difference between a company’s success… or a competitor’s.
3. Better Employee Engagement
Employees who feel their leaders trust them, who are given autonomy, and who have the “skin in the game” are most engaged. Putting decision-making responsibility on individual employees and teams encourages them to learn, develop, and exercise interpersonal “power skills” such as empathy, communication, and collaboration. It can help create a culture of accountability; As humans, we want to “pull our weight” in order not to disappoint our fellow team members. Democratizing decision-making means allowing employees to determine which tasks to prioritize and identify which ones do not add value.
related to How To delegate, entrepreneurs can borrow an exercise from Agile project management: the sprint. Agile, which has its roots in software development, consists of sprints – short periods of time during which an individual or team completes a specific task – followed by review sessions that answer the questions: What was done? What are the results? Did it work, or didn’t it work? What still needs to be done?
As an entrepreneur works to grow their business, they should aim to be involved in most tasks at this stage, focusing on reviewing output and ensuring that their employees remain on the right track. .
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Delegating work is not an escape from responsibility; It is about empowering employees to have a sense of ownership over their responsibilities. This approach serves several business purposes – not only driving speed and better business results, but also serving as a beacon for attracting and retaining employees. It allows entrepreneurs to work Feather their business, not only In their business.
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