When you first started your business, you probably did most things yourself. But as your company grows and you hire employees, it’s time to do the hardest task: delegate. It can be tough to surrender control and to trust others to help you run your business, but it’s essential. Here are five times you should delegate rather than do it all yourself.
1. When Your Employee Can Easily Take Over
Sure, you have your own way of tackling projects. But let’s face it: there aren’t enough hours in the day to do everything yourself. You can certainly find some things to hand off. Try handing over low-level, easy tasks that don’t necessarily require your personal attention. This could include responsibilities like:
- Opening and sorting mail.
- Data entry.
You will have to teach employees how to accomplish certain tasks and how you like things done. But it will be time well spent. The only way for your business to really grow is to relinquish some control and show employees the ropes.
2. When the Task Is Outside Your Scope
When you first launched your business, everything was part of your job description. But now that you have employees, you get to be the CEO and specialize in the big picture. So if a task doesn’t require your expertise or large-scale strategizing, it’s best to let your employees handle it. After all, you hired them for a reason!
- If you hire a receptionist to answer the phones and greet customers, let them. Don’t beat them to the punch just because you have relationships with your customers.
- If you have a sales team, trust them to do their jobs once you’ve onboarded them.
If you believe your employees have the chops to get the job done, let them show you they can.
3. When It’s All About the Money
Obviously you need to keep a close eye on your bottom line. But do you really have to file every receipt and pay every bill yourself? Not likely.
Once your business reaches a certain point, it makes more sense to hire at least a part-time bookkeeper to handle your accounts. You may also want to consider finding a company to manage your payroll needs.
It also makes sense to work with an accountant, especially when tax season rolls around. While you may be comfortable preparing your personal tax return, business taxes are a lot more complicated. Hiring an accountant is an added expense, but it could save you money in the long run.
4. When It Comes to Social Media
Social media is important for most small businesses. It’s free advertising and an easy way to hone your brand. However, it shouldn’t necessarily fall on you, the business owner, to manage the accounts. At a certain point, you should pass the torch to a social media-savvy employee.
Before handing off social media management duties, establish a clear list of social media dos and don’ts, such as how to handle negative customer comments. Also make sure employees who post on behalf of your company know how to appropriately engage with customers and competitors. If they post something inflammatory about another person or entity, your business could be sued for libel. While general liability insurance can cover these legal expenses, it’s best to avoid these mishaps in the first place.
5. When It Involves Your IT Needs
Unless your run a tech business, it’s best to leave your IT needs to the pros, especially when it comes to cyber security and computer troubleshooting. Delegate it!
You probably don’t need a full-time IT employee on staff, but consider outsourcing your needs to an IT company. Most work at an hourly rate or on a monthly retainer. If you only have a handful of employees, hourly, project-specific work may suffice. However, if you have significant IT needs, it might make sense to consider keeping a company on retainer. That way when a technical glitch crops up, you can focus on how to grow revenue in your next quarter, not how to reinstall your business’s firewall.
Rebecca Hosley is a content writer for Insureon, an online small business insurance agency. She is based in Chicago and writes frequently about small business insurance and tech startups.