When you run a small business, it can seem as though you are in charge of every detail of that business. If you want something done right, they say, you have to do it yourself. Except that when you are responsible for doing all the things it will ultimately result in decision fatigue, which will threaten your ability to make better decisions for your business when it comes to important things. So what is a small business owner to do? It may seem as though you can’t afford to get help or that you can’t trust your employees to do things the right way, but in fact nothing could be further from the truth. If you want your small business to grow and thrive, you have to learn the art of delegation.
What Is Decision Fatigue, Anyway?Studies have shown that stress builds up over time, and the stress of having to be in charge of every little detail of your business is no exception. When you overuse your decision-making powers they can become fatigued, which can lead you to become a reactive person instead of a proactive person. In order for a business to grow and thrive you have to be able to take the consequences of your actions into account, and you can’t do that when you are acting reactively. In order to avoid decision fatigue, you have to learn how to let things go and trust your employees to take care of the little things so that you can free up your brain to process the things that are crucial.
Why Have Employees If You Aren’t Going To Delegate?There are many small business owners who fool themselves into believing they can handle the day to day operations of their small business without help, and those are the ones who either give in and hire help or fold before you ever hear about them. Running a business is hard work and you can’t do it alone, especially if you have plans to grow.
But once you do hire help, it can be difficult to actually delegate tasks to them. They might mess it up and cost you your whole business that you worked so hard for, right? Consider this - if you hire the right people (and not just your next door neighbor who is out of work and could really use the money) you hired them for a reason - because they bring skills to the table that you don’t have.
The art of delegating lies in being able to see the skills that others on your team possess so that you know who is capable of handling which task without needing your constant oversight. If you build your team correctly you won’t need to do everything yourself. Keep that in mind during the hiring process - hire for the skills you lack.
It Takes A Team For Whatever You DoThere’s no such thing as a “jack of all trades” unless you expand that saying to include “master of none.” Sure, you can probably get by as a small business owner doing everything by yourself, but eventually the lackluster decisions you will make will start to catch up to you and affect your business. Computer programs don’t happen alone - they take a team to complete. The Internet wasn’t built by one person - or even by one nation. Rome wasn’t built in a day, and it took hordes of people centuries to build it to its golden age. If you want to build something that lasts and is successful, you have to learn to delegate.
Learn more about the art and science of delegation from this infographic.