Girl Boss. Boss Lady. Boss B!tch. SheEO. Woman Entrepreneur. Female Founder. All of these titles might as well have an AKA after it that states: “We can, and will, do it all.”
Until we can’t.
You know that point. The plates are spinning high and fast. You’re tossing more plates up into the air, hoping you can catch them before they crash and shatter. Some things are slipping through the cracks (life self-care) but you can push past that! You’re a woman, and we can do anything! We don’t need help, that would show weakness!
Month after month you push through the endless hours and emails and meetings and before you know it, you’ve lost your passion, fire, and hustle because the work has become too much. Having your hands in everything has sucked everything out of you. And then it hits you: it’s time to delegate.
As great as it sounds to ship off work to someone else’s willing hands, it can also feel like giving your baby away. You’ve worked so hard to build your empire, and handing off small pieces takes a lot of trust in what you’ve built, and trust in other people. What if they can’t do it as well as you would do it? What if they don’t do it the way you would do it?
Ultimately, we have to let these things go. So what if they use Wave instead of Quickbooks for bookkeeping? Does it make your life easier to have someone else handling this? Does it save you precious time? Then let it go!
When it’s time to delegate, it’s easy to get paralyzed when trying to decide what to delegate and who to delegate to.
- What takes the most time and gives you the least amount of joy? List out all the tasks that you do to run your business. Think of every little task from dusting once per week to responding to Yelp reviews. Estimate how much time each task takes out of your week. And then rank what brings you the most joy and the least joy. Those tasks that are time sucks and soul sucking are the first that you should be handing off to someone else. Because guess what? There is someone who loves to respond to Yelp reviews!
- Spend money to make money. Delegating will probably cut into your bottom line. You’ll be contracting out to free up your time. But don’t just think about the money you’ll be spending. Think about the money you can bring in by having more time to focus on business development, operations, and networking.
- You can’t replicate yourself. Your new assistant may not answer emails the exact same way you would. Your accountant may not do payroll the same. But will your business end because of this? Will your bottom line change? Probably not. Let the experts do their thing. Save your energy for the things that truly matter!
- Choose wisely. Putting just a little more time and effort into the hiring process can save you painful hours later on by onboarding a replacement. Finding the right person to contract with is more than finding someone who jives with your ideas and business culture. Before you hire someone, create clear expectations, boundaries, and guidelines. Have a set plan instead of figuring it out as you go along.
Part of being a lady boss is knowing what you can and cannot do. Small business owners don’t have to do it all. The freelance economy is booming for a reason! This is your call to action fellow lady bosses. Delegation is one way to relight your passion in your business and clear out the bottleneck that is created by handling too many tasks. You can do it all, but you don’t have to!