Let’s just be honest… delegation is scary.
There are plenty of reasons to fear delegation. It’s one thing to hand a well-documented process over to a talented individual while keeping control of the outcome. Letting someone take ownership of their role in your organization is often actually terrifying…for good reason.
Without a good understanding of your mission and a strong working relationship based on common goals and shared values, the outcome of this kind of a transition is questionable.
- Your team member could hesitate, become overwhelmed, and struggle to let go of your input and advice rather than embracing this opportunity.
- You could try to empower, but end up micromanaging as challenges arise and things start falling through the cracks.
- The team member could expand the role and make changes that are not aligned with your goals and principles.
- You could wake up one day and realize you have no idea what’s actually going on in a key area of your business and struggle to regain control.
- Your team member could burn out or just leave to pursue other opportunities leaving a gaping hole in your business structure.
Now, I’m not trying to be negative or give you reasons to fear delegation. These situations I describe above can be avoided… and the first step is learning to hire profitably.
When you hire profitably, you empower your team members to take ownership of their role in your organization.
Most business owners know how to identify and select quality candidates. But many skip (or quickly pass over) the critical onboarding step required to hire profitably. If you’re having difficulty depending on your team members to accomplish their goals independently, I suggest you review your onboarding process.
What does a successful onboarding process include?
Expectations & Goals
Rather than simply sharing a detailed job description, I recommend spending time discussing expectations and goals with your new team member.
Share your mission as an organization and tell stories of the impact you’ve made as a team on your clients, customers, and the world. Capture the natural excitement your team member feels as you begin working together. Inspire her to bring her best self to your work.
Step beyond your goals for your team member, and ask him to share his personal and professional goals with you. Look for ways to align his goals with yours so both can be achieved in the course of the work you do together. Ask yourself how you can support your new team member in reaching those goals.
Roles & Relationships
Understanding one’s place on a team begins with a review of the organizational chart, but it shouldn’t end there. I recommend you spend time explaining the hierarchy of your team and the responsibilities of each team member. But there’s so much more to this step.
Discuss common scenarios with your new team member. Make sure she knows who to approach with a question, who to contact for assistance, and how her work impacts the productivity of the team as a whole.
Intentionally provide opportunities for your new team member to build relationships with others on the team. Personally introduce him to the people he will work closest with and encourage everyone to welcome him to the group.
Celebrate personal moments (anniversaries, birthdays, life events) and achievements (individual and team goals) together as a group. Intentionally look for ways to encourage friendship among members of your team.
Tools & Resources
Hiring profitably includes introducing the tools the team uses to work and providing resources to help your new team member be successful. These can include work instructions, checklists, and information. I encourage you to not stop there.
Rather than simply listing the types of software you use as a team, take the time to show your new team member around inside the software itself. Show her your Asana board, for example, and make sure she feels comfortable using it. Help her to navigate your online file directory and help her locate the files she will use most often.
Make process discussions a part of your onboarding process. Give your new team member a chance to use the key systems of his role then ask him for feedback. Be open to his ideas for improvement. Make note of his questions, too. Think about ways you might expand the checklist or documented process to eliminate questions like these in the future.
Welcome new team members in a way that inspires them, builds trusting relationships and aligns your goals with theirs. Empower them to take ownership of their new role.
Hiring profitably is the foundation of building a high impact team. Are you confident in your onboarding system? In my upcoming FREE Training, I’m sharing how to stop wasting your hiring efforts & set your team up for success. Will you join me? You can learn more and register here.