Delegating. It’s one of the hardest things that most entrepreneurs really struggle with and resist getting help. The end result of that struggle is that it halts and stunts their growth, and it really hinders their ability to grow their business.
Entrepreneurs have this self-limiting belief that the work won’t be as good, that it will take more time to correct and that it’s difficult to find good people.
Entrepreneurs come up with a lot of excuses when it comes to delegating and getting help. The fact of the matter is you cannot grow your business if you do not have the support to do so. If you don’t get support, it all falls on your shoulders and eventually, there comes a point where you run out of time.
How to delegate effectively
I wish I had hired help in my business sooner! That is the case for myself as well as for some of my clients in my Business Ecosystem Builders group.
People often want to outsource things like marketing, social media, or other high-level critical thinking tasks. The problem with that is if you don’t have a really strong vision and brand for your company, and know what you are looking for, the person you hire won’t be able to do the job properly. Leadership is needed to set and communicate your vision clearly, you can learn how to do this with leadership training. Marketing is subjective and it can be really difficult to hire help for marketing.
4 steps to delegating without frustration
Here are my steps on how to delegate and how you find who to hire and determine what’s next.
1. Do the two-week time study
In the two-week time study, you write down what you are doing every 15 minutes for two weeks. Then classify it: is it strategic? Is it tactical? Is it something human? (eating, getting dressed, family time, self-care)
Be prepared. This is an extremely uncomfortable exercise. I do this, from the time I get up to the time I go to bed. I always meet myself with a lot of resistance when I do it. However, it’s super-duper eye-opening. It will give you a list of things that you can use to hire help.
The tactical stuff is what you want to hire for first. It will allow you to create a list of things that you do daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, and yearly.
The easiest thing to hire for is anything tactical. For example, you can hire an assistant to handle your scheduling and a lot of the little things that you need to do in your business. Think about the lowest common denominator tasks, such as on and offboarding.
- You can hire somebody to do the scheduling
- You can hire somebody to do all those little things that you don’t like to do and that take up time, but don’t necessarily have to be done by you
Keep in mind, the tactical tasks don’t require a steep learning curve. Hiring for something like a marketing position, there is a steep learning curve. The person you hire must understand your voice, your inflection, your content, and how you show up online.
Always start with asking yourself, “what can I delegate to an assistant?”
From the time study, you will be able to create a job description of what you need support with. You’ll also be able to create places where you can create systems.
You can automate
- some of your billing
- some of your contracts
- some of your email marketing campaigns
- your on- and offboarding
- your scheduling
2. Create the job description
Once you have everything listed and you’ve collected the data from the time study, you can create the job description.
If you are somebody who’s not ready to bring on an employee and let’s face it, most of us aren’t. It’s really important to remember what the needed skill set is for a specific task.
For example, I was chatting with a client, and she really wants help with social media, but she loves writing the content. So, I told her that she could outsource the graphic creation and hire somebody else to do the scheduling. She could keep writing the content. We took a task that seemingly is one thing, social media, and we broke it down into specific pieces. This approach helped her save time to grow her business. She realized that she doesn’t have to worry about finding a copywriter who will write in her voice.
3. Three great candidates
When you’re thinking about hiring, whether it’s a contractor or an employee, I always recommend that you have three really great candidates that are hard to choose from. Why? Because oftentimes people hire too quickly. They are plugging someone in that might not necessarily be the best fit for the business. When we get to the point, where we are ready to hire, we just want somebody to fill the spot, and the first person that comes along and looks like they might be somewhat ideal, we plug into that spot.
Ultimately, that might not necessarily be the best person for the job. Therefore, have three great candidates. Hire really slow, fire really fast!
4. Trust the process
It can take about 90 days to get somebody up to speed with all the things they need to do. For the first 30 days, meet with them daily. Quick check-ins to make sure that they are on track and that you can answer any questions they might have. After the first 30 days, you can move into weekly check-ins.
Make sure that you are very supportive and reachable for that person. That is really important! The whole process is going to take more time than you think it’s going to take.
If you’re hiring somebody who doesn’t have any training in your space, it takes a fair amount of time to get them up to speed. You have to take the time and do it. Trust the process. Remember, taking this time will relieve you from all the noise on the back end.
That’s my hiring process!
- Always try to hire for the things that are easiest first. (House help! Do you have somebody that can help you with laundry, dishes, or cleaning the house?)
- The same approach applies to hiring an assistant. Go for those things that are low-hanging fruit.
The level of frustration you feel around hiring is easy because the worst thing that you can do is hire somebody for a position that is subjective, and you don’t have a clear expectation of what the outcome is that you’re looking for and of how you want things to be. You hire them, your expectations don’t get met because you weren’t super clear about what your expectations were. It just doesn’t work out for anybody.
Higher slowly, fire quickly, and get really clear on what you want the objectives and the tasks to be for this person. Like that everybody’s on the same page and you have a very clear outcome.
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