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Learning to let go – don’t worry it will be ok


That word can turn an entrepreneur into a quivering pool of sweat under their desk.

Why…because no one can do it as well as you.

The entrepreneur deep down knows this isn’t true, but they still have this terrible worry that things won’t get done, won’t get done right and will take twice as long to fix it once it goes wrong.

The reason delegation doesn’t work is almost always because of how it was set up in the first place.

Does this sound familiar? You reluctantly ask an employee (or friend, family member, collegue or what ever title you want to insert here) to do something (usually as you’re running out to do something else). You then give them instructions (at least what you believe to be instructions) and then leave.

When you return, you’re not happy because it wasn’t done the way you wanted. So you conclude that you can’t delegate anything because no one else can do it.

When something goes wrong with delegation, it’s almost always because there is a gap between what you expected and what you asked for.

Now to some of you that sounds crazy. Of course I asked for what I expected. But unfortunately more than likely you didn’t.

You see, as owners/managers we tend to forget that the people we work with don’t have the same knowledge and experience we have. We also don’t always take the time to properly explain “exactly” what we wanted. We think we do, but we don't.

At the same time, think about what the employee was doing at the time you spoke with them. Where they in the middle of something? Where they truly paying attention to what you said?

One simple way to ensure that when you delegate something to an employee (or others) that it will be done correctly is to ask the employee to repeat back what they heard. If they successfully repeat back what you requested, you should also ask “what do you think is the best way to tackle that”? This way you also ensure they know how to do the thing you want them to do.

This might sound like a lot of extra steps, but if you take the time up front you will save yourself time repeating yourself and you’ll save yourself the grief and stress of getting upset because “no one listens to you”.