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It’s HOW You Delegate that Creates Wins or Losses

If you’re a salon/spa owner, you have a choice to “do it all yourself” or, to grow your company by sharing the load with select team members.

The “do it all yourself” approach places all of the responsibilities, tasks, projects, decision making and more, squarely on your shoulders.

If you enjoy being perpetually overwhelmed, stressed and burnt out, the “do it all yourself” approach will not disappoint you.

THE BIG QUESTION: If most owners prefer to share the load, tasks and responsibilities of growing a successful salon/spa — why do so many owners feel overwhelmed, stressed and burnt out?

The simple answer is that many owners suffer from “letting-go-itis.” Letting-go-itis” sounds like, “If I want it done right, I’ll do it myself.” It’s also fueled by lack of trust, lack of confidence, need for control, and lack of leadership development.

Sharing the load simply means delegating tasks, responsibilities and outcomes with select team members.

Delegation done right is like supercharging your company’s ability to accomplish more in less time.

Likewise, delegation done poorly is the fast track to frustration, confusion, more stress and plenty more missed opportunities.

Use the following six steps to ensure that your delegation efforts create wins and progress and not losses and backsliding:

  1. Control more by controlling less: Yes, it’s important to keep your finger on the pulse of your company. But even in a small salon/spa, it would take an octopus to monitor everything that’s going on. Less experienced leaders have a hard time keeping their hands off assigned projects, tasks and responsibilities. KEY: Never touch or take over anything you assign to another individual. Once you do, individuals will question why they put forth any effort if you were just going to change everything they worked on — or finish it yourself. Keep reading.

  2. 100% clarity on expectations and outcomes: Entrepreneurs are notorious for giving half-baked assignments, tasks and responsibilities that can be misinterpreted. Entrepreneurs are also notorious for assuming the assignment is simple and can be completed in half the time it will actually take. KEY: Live by the No-Compromise Leadership rule of “absolute clarity.” This means taking the time to thoroughly define the results you’re expecting and what the final outcome must look like.

  3. What/why/how/when: This continues on the absolute clarity requirement by going beyond the “what” expectation to include the “why/how/when” behind the task, project or responsibility. KEY: Setting individuals and teams up to win takes time. As leader, it is your responsibility to ensure individuals and teams have all the pieces of the puzzle. More importantly, they need to understand the framework of how to build it and when it must be completed.

  4. Daily/weekly/monthly check-in’s: The last thing any leader wants to hear the day before a big deadline is that it’s far from complete. Just as daily huddles are a tool to ensure all team members are briefed on progress-to-date and what needs to be done today, the same applies to all tasks, assignments and projects. KEY: Daily, weekly and monthly check-in’s keep team members on task. Daily check-in’s are fast meetings or even just an email or phone call. Weekly check-in’s allow time to dive into the details. Monthly check-in’s are progress reports. This approach allows you to oversee multiple tasks and projects. More importantly, it keeps those responsible on task and on time.

  5. Ask the most important question: The easiest question to ask when things appear to be falling behind is, “Where are you stuck?” This simple question puts the focus on the roadblock rather than pointing the finger of blame on the individual. KEY: When asking where the individual is stuck, you must listen and process the information. Take time to assess the status before offering feedback or making a decision. Maybe the individual needs specific help or more resources. Only if you determine that this individual can’t get the task or project across the finish line, do you reassign to someone else. Remember, do not take over the work.

  6. Be the coach, mentor — not the fixer: This can be extremely tough for many owners to do. It requires self-discipline to stay in coach/mentor mode. KEY: Your responsibility as the leader is to set and clarify the destination and desired outcome — not jump in and be the problem fixer. Offer guidance, suggestions or resources to create a win for the company and the employee.

Here’s my challenge to you: Delegation is a leadership skill that, once mastered, can take you, your employees and your company to extraordinary places.

Set your team members up to win by following the six steps presented here.


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