When you start a business, you can get pretty far on the fresh legs of a new idea. But if you want to continue growing, you have to get help.
In real estate, the folly of wearing all the hats for too long has undone many talented and ambitious professionals. The burned-out, frenetic real estate agent model is passed off as an unfortunate byproduct of success.
But what type of success are we talking about? It’s not financial–contrary to public perception, the average real estate agent takes home less than $50,000 a year.
It’s also not happiness. According to a study published in Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology, the real estate industry has the second-highest rate of clinically diagnosed depression.
Fortunately, there’s a simple fix to this: delegate.
When you identify what you’re best at and enjoy and start handing off the rest, your business is suddenly in a position to grow at a rate you could never achieve on your own.
So why don’t more people delegate? Here are three of the most common reasons for not delegating and what you can do about it.
#1 In the time it takes to teach someone, I may as well do it myself
This excuse is the lamest of them all.
You have to take the long view if you are a business owner. It’s true that it takes time to train someone in your ways, and there will be a period of time when you have to check their work or run interference. But this short-term investment yields long-term returns.
#2 Nobody can do it as well as I can
For many parts of your business, this is simply not true.
For example, I am not the best sign installer I know, nor the best photographer or organizer of files. When I used to do those tasks for myself, I was slow, and my results were mediocre at best. The worst part was that I was squandering time that could have been used for the things I am the best at. Now, there are people on my team with more natural ability, better equipment, and more experience in these areas.
By the same token, there are some things that I’m pretty good at which were harder for me to sub out, like marketing tasks, open houses, and client gift shopping. I stressed out about other people being able to deliver the same quality that I would. In my opinion, nobody can do those things as well as I can. But they can do them well enough.
For delegating, a good rule is if someone can do something 80% as good as you, then it’s something you can hand off. This leaves you with the things only you can do. And that is how you grow your business.
#3 I can’t afford it
I call BS on this one. What’s going on is you don’t want to share. Like my friend Sasha Tripp says, “You’re just being greedy.”
If you want to grow, you can’t afford not to pay other people to take on some of the burden. It’s scary to make a new investment, but it’s up to you to get your money’s worth out of it.
By delegating, you are freeing up your valuable time to spend more of it doing high-value activities that only you can do. Delegate, and watch the dollars roll in.
If you’re still reluctant, ask yourself this: Is it the money I don’t want to share, or is it the sunshine?
In other words, does it rub you the wrong way to see someone on your team getting praise for something you used to do? Get over yourself if you want to grow.
If you’ve been growing your business but feel like you’ve hit a plateau, it might be time to consider bringing on some team members. If you do it right, it’ll be one of the best investments you make for your business.