Delegate & Elevate OR How to Keep Your Revenue Growing

DELEGATE ELEVATEIn January, I talked about “Letting Go of the Vine” and why this is so crucial to achieving the success you deserve.  If you didn’t read this post, you might want to read it here  before you read this blog. 

So after you have taken the time to track your activities for some period of time and gone through the exercise I suggested in January’s blog of figuring what you enjoy to do and do well, etc., the next step is actually delegating work.  This is the really tough part, trust me I know. But by delegating, you are giving yourself the opportunity to elevate yourself to operate at your highest and best use.

 But’s let back up a little.  Why delegate?  Sounds like a silly question and yet so many struggle with doing it so I have to believe the value is not being communicated.  Let me take a crack at it.  Do any of these sound like you?

  1. You are experiencing a lack of control over the business because you are trying to do too many things the least of which is being strategic?
  2. You’re not on the same page with your staff, your clients, your vendors, your partners?
  3. The firm has stopped growing?
  4. Nothing seems to be working – staff is numb to new initiatives and you are spinning your wheels?

IF any of these (or multiple!) describe where you are now, then delegating is going to be key (if not the only way) in moving you out of this rut.  How do you start doing this?

  1. The first component has to be trust – trust that you have the right team on board who can handle what you delegate to them. If you don’t have this, nothing else is relevant.  Stop now and evaluate your team and if replacements need to be made, make them.  You are not doing yourself or the staff in question any favors by holding on to them.
  2. IF the right players are in place, your next step is to understand their strengths and weaknesses so you can delegate the correct tasks to them.
  3. Put a true leadership team in place – who are these individuals?
    1. They are your most trusted staff
    2. They are your highest best performers
    3. They understand and live the vision of the firm

Once you have this leadership team in place, you can begin discussions with them as to what you need to delegate, how and who to delegate it to and then let them be in charge of these tasks going forward. They will report to you as needed so you don’t feel a total loss of control over these items but reporting is the extent of your involvement.

One last thought – you are NOT your business – you created it but in order for it to find success, it has to be a self-sustaining entity.  Learning to delegate is an important step in this process.

Please email us, call us (225.71.8009) or visit our website to schedule a complimentary call with us to discuss this further. We can assist you in ALL aspects of Delegating & Elevating. 

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Letting Go of the Vine

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Letting Go of the Vine – Why & How?

In my next few blog posts, I will explore the why and how of “letting go of the vine” or learning how to delegate and elevate yourself to a true leadership position.  Why is this important?  Most of you know why but I’ll list a few reasons here. 

If you have ambitions to grow your firm in the number of clients and revenue, you cannot continue to hold on to everything in your firm.  It’s just not possible. You will hit a ceiling very quickly and most likely, become very frustrated with your firm, your role and your life in general. After all, you didn’t become an entrepreneur to get caught in the grind of everyday work.  You most likely became an entrepreneur to create a distinct quality of life for you and your family and letting go of the vine is a big jump in getting to that quality of life.

Additionally, when you delegate to your staff, you give them opportunity to take the ball and run with it, to grow, to feel as though what they do makes a difference in the firm.  So just how do you start on this path?

First of all, take stock of what you do on a daily basis. I would suggest tracking your time for some period to get a good idea of where your time goes.  You will most likely be surprised by what you see.  I use Toggl (www.toggl.com) on a daily basis and find it helps me tremendously to focus more on the activities I should be.

Secondly, take a look at those items you do regularly and classify them into some categories.

  1. I love to do it and I’m great at doing it
  2. I like to do it and I’m good at doing it
  3. I don’t like to do but I’m good at doing it
  4. I don’t like it and I’m not good at it

Anything that falls into #4 should be delegated immediately even if they are “people related”.  If you don’t enjoy the HR related activities, don’t do them.  You may not be cut out to do it and should hire someone who is.  Then, take a look at the items in #3. These items should all be outsourced eventually because even if you’re good at it, doing things that you don’t like to do saps your energy which should be focused on items in #1 & #2.

One final hurdle – you have to rid yourself of thoughts like “no one can do it as well as me” or “it’s faster if I do it myself”.  Even though training can be time consuming, it’s short term pain for some great long term gain.

We work with advisors every day on these issues.  Give us a call or send us an email to see if we can assist you as well.

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10 Years, 10 Truths - Number 2 OR Why You Need a Strategic Plan…Walk the Walk and Talk the Talk

You know the very best way for your clients to achieve their goals is to have a plan, right? Makes sense, doesn’t require a lot of debate. However, when it comes to having a plan to achieve your vision of your firm and where you want your firm to take you, studies show that few of you have this in place.

 Why?

1. Is it because it seems overwhelming?
2. Don’t know where to start?
3. Wondering how you’ll get the initiatives achieved when you’re struggling to keep up with what you have on your plate now?

All good reasons so let me take them one by one.

1. Yes, it’s overwhelming but not if you do some homework and identify what you want to accomplish. Also, don’t think about three years or five years. Think about what you want to accomplish in the next 12 months (one quarter at a time).


a. Do you want to grow your firm? If so, what marketing are you most comfortable with? You need a marketing strategy that is tailored to what you're comfortable with. There is no “one type of marketing” for everyone.

b. Staff – do you have all A players on board? If not, either move them to a position within your firm they are better suited for or replace them. Sound harsh? Maybe but I can promise you will never get where you want to be without the right riders on the bus in the right seats (see my blog of2/26/16 -10 Years, 10 Truths - Number 1).

c. Operations & Technology – do you have the right technology? Does it integrate? Do you have processes for everything in your firm?

2. Now, look through the few ideas I gave you above. Which is the MOST pressing? Pick one or two and focus on those. When they have been addressed to your satisfaction, move on to the next most urgent issue.

3. How do you do all of this with what you have your plate? You bite the bullet and put in extra time if needed (and remember, you have all A players helping you) BECAUSE, if you do these things, you will have less on your plate in the future and the items left on your plate will be the things you should be dealing with…not things that others should do.

So here are some common signs you need a Strategic Plan. If any of these are true for you, give us a call. We can help you identify your gaps, provide solutions to close them and help you stay accountable to getting them done!

Common warning signs you need a strategic plan:
1. When you are asked why you’re in business and your only answer is “Profit” or “to make money”.
2. Someone asks you where your business will be in one year and you don’t have a clue. You ask your partners and/or management team the same question and get wildly different answers.
3. You have some idea where you want to go in the next year but you don’t have any idea what you’re going to do to make it a reality.
4. Your company won’t hit its revenue goals for the year and although there can be many reasons for the shortfall, you’re not sure how to grow the top line.
5. There are inconsistencies in your brochure, your web site, your sales collateral, etc. You can’t understand the content and more importantly, neither can anyone else. You find that when you explain your business to a potential client, you tell different stories about how you provide value.
6. You’re ignoring the competition. You don’t know who your number one competitor is and what they’re doing.
7. Everything on your to-do list is a priority. You don’t know where your time is best spent.
8. Friends and colleagues can’t refer you because they aren’t sure exactly what value your business provides and to whom?
9. You ask your employees what success looks like and they don’t have a consistent answer.
10. You complain when your customers call you because you just don’t have time to talk to them. You notice your staff complaining as well.

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