Delegate what you can, not what you want to

In order to achieve something at large scale, you need to work with other people and delegate parts of your work to them. You can’t do it all on your own.

However, how do you decide what to delegate?

A common approach is to delegate what you don’t like to do, while doing what you do like to do yourself. Since the things you like to do are often the things that you’re also good at doing, this is a generally useful approach during the initial stages of scaling.

However, just because you like to do something doesn’t mean that it’s a high value activity. As you scale further, the demands on your time increase to the point where you need to allocate your scarce time to those activities that yield the highest return on your time.

These activities may or may not be those that you enjoy doing. But they are those activities which will have the greatest impact in moving the organization forward. They are those activities which you are uniquely positioned to do, and which cannot be done as well by others.

In other words, you need to delegate what you can, not what you want to.

Also published on Medium.