Below is the feature in Babes Who Hustle.
Just over two years ago, I opened up two brick and mortar businesses as a first-time business owner. This was an incredibly exciting time that required a quick learning curve and a lot of trial and error. In addition to running the show at work, I was attending college and being a wife, and while I adored the hustle of it all, it didn’t take long to learn that I’m not the best for the job in all areas of my business.
It’s a beautiful thing to create something from the ground up and see it through to opening day and beyond. It’s an even more beautiful thing to realize that although the business may be your ‘baby,’ it will continue to grow, and along with that growth will come your responsibility to hire, mentor and empower employees who can create progress alongside you. (How you find them and empower them is a lesson for another day.)
It’s a pretty cool moment when you accept that someone who isn’t you might have the best vision and skill to bring something new to your business. Although we hope and believe that we’re singlehandedly the best of the best in our biz, our greatest strength is having the ability to delegate to those who can carry out tasks in more effective, unique ways. Along with it being beneficial to us as business owners, we’re also creating a culture of empowered employees who are passionate about adding value to our companies by bringing new things to the table. Once you learn that your weaknesses might be the strengths of your employees, you’ve won.
Nobody will tell you it’s easy to loosen the reins, but as time passes and systems are created, delegating and expanding becomes not only manageable, but a blessing. It has freed up my ability to go full-force in utilizing my own strengths while working collaboratively toward the company missions. Since doing so, I have let go of more day-to-day operations, creating time to influence the direction and culture of the business rather than worrying about whether or not we have stamps and envelopes.
This is the part of the article when the lesson of finding great people to do life with, and surrounding yourself in an entrepreneurial-minded community, is reiterated. Start small if you have to, but start today. Focus on the big picture of the company, and on your strengths (and weaknesses) as the owner. There is always going to be someone with incredible talents to complement your own, and that’s the beauty of having a team.
Next time you think that you’re the only one capable of answering that customer service email, try delegating to someone who is just as capable of carrying out a response, and proceed to the next task on your to-do list. Onward and upward.