I had a good look at my to-do list the other day and it hit me, I was still working primarily in the business, instead of on the business.
As you all know, it’s vital that the leader of a company (CEO, Director, Founder, whatever) is thinking about the direction of the company and is actively planning and thinking about the future. If that person gets bogged down in actually doing the day-to-day activities, then it becomes impossible to do that.
A few examples
Here are a few things that I realised I was getting bogged down with that really should be done by someone else:
- Payroll, dividend vouchers and pensionsÂ – I finally decided to delegate this to Mo, our extremely talented book keeper. It’s a task that naturally fits into her skill set and it’s something that takes a fair bit of my time at the end of every month.
- Data collection for analysisÂ – Occasionally we do some research on our competitors, which can be quite time consuming. As I blogged about, I’ve now gotten a very capable virtual assistant who I delegate this to.
- Marketing our eventsÂ – Lisa has now become the Marketing Manager at Carson Systems. She is in charge of marketing across all of our products and events.
- Making coffee … Just kidding, I’m still the coffee boy around here 🙂
Management by Delegation, not Abdication
So am I just saying that you should be delegating the time-consuming, boring stuff? Definitely not. You should be delegating everything (at least eventually).
As a business owner, you should remember that eventually, everything will be done by other people. This is the only way to truly realise the value of running your own company and the financial benefits of selling it someday. However, in order to get there, you need to train your team properly and then hand over responsibility.
Michael E Gerber, author of The Emyth Revisited, coined the phrase â€œManagement by Delegation, not Abdicationâ€, and it’s a powerful concept.
Management by Abdication says: “I don’t care how you get it done, just do it.”
Management by Delegation says: “Let me teach you how we do this here, and then you can have complete responsibility for it.”
The latter example ensures that the quality of service and products are preserved, whilst freeing you up to focus on running the company.