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The Fine Art of Delegation


Maggie Kelly

It’s no secret that LongerDays takes ongoing, day-to-day tasks off the hands of business owners – all with the goal of giving them more time to run their businesses and focus on the bigger picture.

When we receive these tasks, our Team Leads often delegate the work out to other team members. It’s up to the Team Lead to create an easy-to-follow process so whoever does the task has all of the information they need to accurately and confidently do the work.

So… How do we do it?

It’s All About The Process

Creating accurate processes is one of the first things a LongerDays employee learns. Each process normally consists of 5 key things:

  • Background (some more info on why we’re doing this task)
  • Schedule (how often will this task be done, and what day(s)/time of day?)
  • Resources (what specific information do we need to get this task done properly?)
  • Process (the actual step-by-step instructions to complete the task)
  • Deliverable (what is the finished product?)

Ideally, you should be able to send a process to a team member who has no background information on the client or task at hand, and have them execute it flawlessly (which is pretty much what we do every day!).

Having detailed background information from the beginning is critical. This includes context about the client and the project, and why the task at hand needs to be completed. We depend on our clients to provide such information (and use what we learn over the course of working relationship to build context).

Without enough information, it can be tricky to create an accurate process, and makes it pretty difficult to know what specific deliverable the client is after.

Every project is a little bit different, and we’re used to being agile, making decisions without much guidance, and filling in the gaps on our own… But in every instance, more information from the client yields better results for everyone.

Details and Delegation

Before we can ever delegate work to another, however, clients themselves have to send us work!

Tasks come in via email, phone calls, and even Slack messages, so it’s often up to us to ask important questions, follow up for clarification, and extract as much detail from the request as we possibly can.

While we’re more than prepared to ask questions and fill in the gaps, the best results and most satisfied clients come from detail up front – and this goes for more than just LongerDays! Any time you’re delegating work to an employee, a freelancer, a service, or anyone else, the more detail you can provide, the better.

The devil is in the details, so they say, and that goes for our team sharing work, clients sending us work, and any other professional relationship. If you want things done right, provide as much information as possible, and if you’re on the receiving end, ask as many questions as needed to get a clear picture of the task at hand. The more you ask for this time, the more they’ll usually provide next time.

We have to be delegation masters to do our jobs properly, and that requires processing. Process-making requires detail. As you work with others, whether they’re outsourced, on your team, or any other working relationship, keep this in mind!

The more information we can provide one another, the better ALL of our work will be.

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