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Delegate and empower! Regain control of your time.

All of us are pressed for time, always attempting to balance the overwhelming demands of business with the basic wants and needs of family.  In earlier insights, we have examined the need for and care of your corporate vision, and how to develop and nurture that vision through to creation of a corporate culture, goals, strategies and tactics.  Now we get personal.

Each of us makes many decisions each day as to where to spend the days’ time. Many of our decisions seem to be made by others, with meetings scheduled requiring our attendance, the landslide of emails arriving hourly, emergencies popping up requiring immediate attention, and more. 

The first thing to do as a senior executive is delegate whatever comes across your desk that is not directly relevant to your enterprise’s and your own strategic importance to the company.  That means teaching others how to do some of the work you have been doing and empowering them to make the attendant decisions, sometimes loading more upon another’s full plate.  We must assume first that your delegation effort is to those lower in the food chain.  (They in turn must learn to delegate using the same filter, or if there is no next level, shed those items not in their strategic path.) 

[Email readers continue here…] Second, you have a vision for the company which you ask everyone to buy into as they plan and execute during their year.  You should remember to take your own advice, and filter your activities through the needs of your vision, again shedding even more insignificant activities that cross your desk.

Who knows? These two filters when put in place might just give you back enough time to add a few enjoyable processes to your day, just for the lift they give.  We can dream, can’t we?

  • One reason we hold on to tasks we should delegate is that we do not have confidence that the person to whom the task should appropriately be delegated will perform the task as well as we would, or even up to the standards for performing that task. So, that person needs to be replaced ASAP. One of the biggest mistakes managers make is holding on to subpar performers too long. The other side of the coin — and I have been in this position — is that for political reasons, sometimes we are unable to replace such people. In which case…

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