Ask yourself, which team member(s) do you trust when it comes to being involved in higher value jobs? If you’re unsure or if your answer is no one, think again. Think about how you acquired your skills so you could be trusted with greater responsibilities. Chances are, you were taken under the wing of a partner, someone who mentored you and involved you in face-to-face client meetings. It’s now your turn to do the same with your team if you haven’t already.
To build a sustainable business without heavy partner involvement, you must learn to let go and trust your team with greater responsibilities. Take the monkey bars, for example. You will never make it across if you don’t let go of the bar and reach for the next. Letting go is the only way to progress. By providing your team with greater responsibilities, you will create a more productive, competent and confident team. It will also send the clear message that you trust them, value their skills and have interest in their career growth and success. Letting go and delegating higher-level responsibilities to your team can be a tough process. Don’t let this intimidate you though. There comes a time when you have to take the leap, throw people in at the deep end, to gain the rewards.
Start by deciding what responsibilities or projects to let go. Delegate a project that isn’t the most time-sensitive and most importantly, don’t delegate a task just because you aren’t willing to complete it. An important factor in passing along greater responsibilities is choosing the right people for the project. Take the time to learn the strengths and weaknesses of your team members to keep them in mind when delegating. Select a team member who is self-motivated, comfortable working without constant supervision and someone you’re confident in. Once you find a good person, throw them more and more responsibility.
Keep in mind when trusting your team with greater tasks, be sure to communicate clearly from the start. Outline your expectations, provide a timeline and include the deliverables for the responsibility. The more you provide, the better off the team member will be with completing the task and achieving the goals. After delegating, check in with the team member but don’t be too overbearing. This will demonstrate you have faith and trust in their work. Lastly, be patient, understanding and let the team member know you are there to answer any questions. As they learn your expectations and you learn the best way your team operates, the “letting go” process will get easier.
As you delegate more responsibilities, you will see an improvement in your firm’s efficiency, team engagement and overall productivity. Letting go sends a powerful message to your team about how much they are trusted and how valued they are to your business.
About the Author
Colin DunnDirector & Co-founder at PANALITIX
Colin is a Chartered Accountant who, having spent almost 10 years with one of the fastest growing and most innovative firms in the UK, has since invested over 20 years helping business owners to improve their businesses with a focus on attracting new clients, better managing existing clients, developing new products, building an engaged team and strengthening internal business processes.
Colin's primary focus at PANALITIX is on product development and business improvement content. He is the author of the bestselling book “Accountants: The Natural Trusted Advisors".