How To Delegate Effectively

Reclaim Your Time: 4 Simple Steps to Delegate Like Branson

Reclaim Your Time: 4 Simple Steps to Delegate Like Branson

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branson“As much as you need a strong personality to build a business from scratch, you also must understand the art of delegation. I have to be good at helping people run the individual businesses, and I have to be willing to step back. The company must be set up so it can continue without me.”

- Richard Branson

Judging on the above quote, I think it is reasonable to assume that Mr. Branson would agree with the following statement: The more successful you become in your career or business, the more you will have to delegate.

Now, I haven’t had the chance for a one on one with Richard (yet…) to discuss his delegation methods but I believe that they would follow a similar process to one I have developed over 5 years of delegation and outsourcing experience in both large corporations and small internet start-ups.

I like to call it The Efficient Delegation Formula. With these four simple steps, you can reclaim your time by identifying then delegating tasks within your business.

The Efficient Delegation Formula

#1: Determine The Tasks You Can Delegate

Spend 1 hour just thinking about your role/business and where within it, you spend your time.

Then simply download this tool. It will give an indication as to which tasks and processes within your role/business are “delegate-able.”

You will need to enter each task that you operate in your role/business in the “Tasks” column and then input a numerical value between 1 and 10 into the next 5 columns.

The tool will then provide an opinion as to whether this is a task you should/shouldn’t delegate.

(NOTE - This is just a tool, the final decision on “delegate-ability” must come from you.)

#2: Perform The Tasks You Will Delegate

This is the one step that the majority of people miss and is the major reason for frustration with both outsourcing and delegation.

Once you are aware of the tasks that should be delegated within your role/business, it is of paramount importance that you are 100% proficient in the process yourself.

This will enable you to both train your delegate effectively and to understand the time requirements of the task/process.

#3: Create Working Procedures

The book Work The System by Sam Carpenter, is an awesome story about how Sam turned his small business around from chaotic to a well-oiled machine through the use of systems and documentation.

Sam recommends that each task or process in your business has an associated Working Procedure - a document containing a step by step guide in written, image or video format describing how the task or process is to be performed.

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  • Here is the Working Procedure template we use in our business. You can follow this template to create your own working procedures.
  • And here is an example of a complete working procedure for a specific task (the creation and posting of social media content for one of our online businesses.)
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#4: Training

The person who is responsible for the task/process is responsible for training any new team member that will take on the task/process. Training is a multi-step process and includes:

  • Introduction - You share the Working Procedure with the new team member to introduce them to the task/process
  • Forward Job Shadowing – Immediately after the Induction, you operate the process whilst your new team member is present
  • Reverse Job Shadowing – Your new team member operates the process whilst you are present

It is only when all four of these stages in The Efficient Delegation Formula are complete that you can step back and allow the process to operate independently of yourself.

At the start of this article I made the statement: The more successful you become in your career or business, the more you will have to delegate.

However, I think that Mr. Branson would actually be more likely to use the reverse: The more you delegate effectively in your career or business, the more successful you will become.

Just something to think about...

Tom is the Founder of Virtual Valley, a platform that connects Entrepreneurs and Rockstar Virtual Assistants with the mission of giving Entrepreneurs back 1 million hours of their time by 2018. Tom writes about how to grow your virtual business on the Virtual Valley Blog and gives free one on one marketing advice to EVERYONE that signs up here.