Two keys that focus and drive value

Colin Lake's picture

We’re often confronted with the challenge of time management, but what about the idea of actually making time speed up?  The literal capability to make time go by faster doesn’t seem fit any rational thought, right?

So, why do we always say… "Time fly’s when you're having fun" if there wasn’t at least a feeling as if time had passed faster than normal when we’re enjoying the activity?

The reality is if you’re doing something meaningful to you and others, your perspective of time is changed, and the challenges of time fall away because you aren’t in a rush to get the activity over with, which is exactly what happens when you feel “stuck” doing anything that you don’t find meaningful.

The questions then become…how do I do more meaningful activities? Can I successfully pass of those activities I don’t want to do?  If I do, can ALL work be fun?

There are 2 principles of delegating:

  1. The other person “does it better than you.” 
  2. It allows you to do more of the things you're great at doing.

The reality is, both are relevant and if you’re thinking from the perspective of being a “LEAN digital business”, every second of time should be tied to client value and if the work you’re doing at any moment doesn’t seem valuable or meaningful to you, it’s likely to be seen the same way from your clients perspective… Let's explore both keys to effective delegation, it’s not just about passing off work, but doing so in a way that the work is getting done with a clear focus on quality and value to your clients and prospects.

Principal 1: Someone does it better. 

If we use the timeless adage "if you want something done right, do it yourself!", with emphasis on the 2nd part, it’s why we’re often caught in our own over-commitments of time. Fee compression is persistent in all service industries, and its high time we take account of the things that create the greatest value for our clients and what we’re best at doing and stay busy doing only that!

Although we may feel we do “it” right, there is a solution to effectively delegating.  SPEND THE TIME UPFRONT, EXPLAINING (IN PAINFULLY CLEAR WAY) YOUR EXACT EXPECTATIONS.  Next, clearly assess and describe the value of the task and how it’s connected, in a clear way to client value.  It’s not about being tough on your staff, but rather keeping them informed, making them feel empowered, creating inclusion in the big picture of taking care of your valued clients.  

By improving the delegation process itself, it not only ensures the work gets done but you’ll feel more comfortable that the team will be taking care of the task with that same “meaningful approach” you would have taken, now that they’re fully engaged.

Principal 2: So, you can do more of the things you're great at doing. 

Most of the small business owners we work with spend hours doing things “below their pay grade,” in other words, if you don't have an admin doing your admin “stuff,” you're the admin.  Ultimately, it’s the lack of organization of these items “under your pay grade” that drive the biggest impact to your productivity.  Leveraging a project management approach to these items is a great step in ensuring you get done the work that is needed, at the right times, and can keep focused on those “pay grade” tasks more often.

Hiring someone when it’s needed is also a critical step but when you hire someone, take the right amount of time to develop a discipline (or process) for managing this work. When you do you’ll find that the help you hire will continually deliver on the needs and requests of your valued clients and progress can be sustained.

Here are some examples from successful business leaders to help make the points:

  • Bill Smith of "SHIPT" steps back when things below his pay scale need to be done and delegates "As much as I'd like to be able to do it all myself, I know there are some areas of my work life that are best to pass off, so I can keep focused on what is most important," the founder and CEO of Shipt tells CNBC. "Hiring a fantastic executive assistant is crucial. It may be difficult at first, but let this person manage straightforward time-consuming tasks."
  • An excerpt from an interview with Tony Robbins. "The answer is you hire someone (for a reasonable fee). You trade with someone (If you can't pay). You trade them for two hours. That’s what I did in the beginning. Remember… I was just really young in my career, in the very early days, and I was running to get to the dry cleaners, so I could get my only two suits because if I didn't get them, you know, the flight closes and I can’t get on the plane.
  • I could be doing something that’s so productive and I’m standing in line at the dry-cleaning place. This is just nuts.... I was like 17, 18, 19, I wasn’t sure what I was, and I said, ‘I’m going to hire somebody.’ Two hours a day, that’s what I need to start with. And then it was 4 hours.
  • And so, my view is, I don't do anything that someone else can do better, and I don't do anything that isn’t the highest and best use of my time.” ~Tony Robbins

Your chief responsibility as a leader, a business owner or an employee, it turns out, is identifying what you do best, why you're so good at it, THEN DOING IT MORE OFTEN. Next, take the time to properly delegate the other things for a price you can afford.  Leverage tools like engagement and project management to help establish the teamwork and processes that will keep these time destroyers in check.

At Trutelic, Inc. our mission is to help our clients make certain they're able to sustainably stay focused on delivering value, with the least amount of waste possible.  We achieve this outcome for clients by helping them clearly define the value and then subsequently develop the digital platform that focuses their time on value creating activities with the minimization of DOWNTIME.  Our platform is driven by four key engines, the Trutelic iOP™, Recommended Day™, Trutelic Beacon™ (CMS), and the powerful Athena Business Cloud™.  We offer business solutions within marketing, sales, service all supported by a Lean support, operations and supervisory hub.  We have proven experience and expertise with professional service firms including financial services, accountants, and consulting firms who leverage our hybrid service model to break their organizations "out of the box!”.  Learn more about Lean Digital Transformations on our website