Aby Sam Thomas

“If you want it done right, you do it yourself.” This axiom is the mantra of choice for many small business owners who, when unable to get the results they want from their team, pile on more of their subordinates’ tasks to their already heavy-laden to-do list. Many such business owners then fall into the rut of micromanagement, where they become excessively controlling and closely follow the work of their subordinates, leading to a work atmosphere that is often negative and resentful and therefore mismanaged.

Such a scenario has led to the downfall of many businesses and small business owners would be wise to stay away from such pitfalls in their line of work. After all, you built a team because you can’t do everything yourself, and so micromanagement and moving team tasks back to your plate is going to adversely affect the success of your enterprise. Here are a few tips to help you avoid becoming a micromanager and have a team that is both effective and efficient, which will thereby let you get the results you need to drive your business forward:

  • Be results-oriented: As a small business owner, you certainly know the outcomes you are looking for from your enterprise—now, make sure your team knows it as well. Make it clear to your employees what the target is and how you want to get there. The oft-repeated complaint that your team is not giving you the results you want is usually because, well, you haven’t told them exactly what you want either! Set goals together with your team so that when you delegate tasks to them, they know exactly what they have to deliver.
  • Keep regular check-in points: Make a roadmap of your plans and tasks and share the timeline you intend to have them accomplished in with the members of your team. Next, maintain a schedule in which you will check on the status of these tasks—this can take the form of a weekly meeting or, if the situation calls for it, a daily phone call. While your employees will love being able to work without any interference, you will now be able to use your time more efficiently while also being updated on project status on a regular basis.
  • Re-evaluate your team: If after practicing the above points you still find the results lacking, consider reshaping your team. Figure out which employees continue to underperform and make an honest assessment of the situation. Find out where the fault is—is it miscommunication that’s causing the gap between you and your employee? Maybe that particular employee needs more guidance in his/her tasks, or maybe they are simply not competent enough. Regardless of the issue, make sure you address it so that you have a team that works like a well-oiled machine.

Do you have a success formula to get your team to produce the best results for you and your business? Tell us about them in the comments below.

This article is part of the Drive Your Business Forward series. Check out allvoices.com/smallbusiness for more tips and advice on how to succeed as a small business. This series is supported by Mercedes-Benz Sprinter.