Garrett, Assistant Manager for one of the west's fastest growing tire retail and service shops, told Session 8B of the Leadership Development Lab (LDL):
"This past Tuesday was going like any other day. My balancing act included working the front counter, answering phones, helping customers, processing paperwork, answering emails, keeping employees on task and tackling whatever else the day threw my way. I don't usually find time to process invoices during open to the pubic hours, I usually wait until we close and stay later than everyone else to play catch up. We had an unusually quiet break from the phones and customers, so decided to try and get ahead of the game on paperwork.
"Invoice after invoice processed and shoved into the envelope to mail out. I was making great time, but with my laser-sharp focus, I didn't hear or see that someone came in from the door behind me. Like a ninja. Brad had crept up my right side and yelling like a martial arts competitor, "Karate Chop!" while he flung his arm down across mine (in a chopping motion) forcing me to drop the pen and paper I had in my hands. Our shop seems to have no boundaries. We all get along well and in these small slivers of down time, we all try to have some fun.
"Dazed and confused, I looked over to Brad who had a huge grin on his face. A little irritated with what had just happened, I asked, 'What the heck was that for?' He transitioned to his more serious conversation face and reminded me that I had promised to teach him the things I do in my position. This would help relieve some of the stress we had talked about earlier. I felt like he had communicated that he didn't want to learn any more, that he was content where he was. A sense of relief washed over me, as the reality of what had just happened started to sink in. I smiled at Brad, 'Thank you for wanting to step up to the plate and take on more responsibility.'
"We started training on correctly processing invoices. From that day forward, any chance I've had to train or allow Brad to practice a new skill he's learned, I delegate it to him.
"The lesson I learned from this experience is the importance of delegating tasks to those who are there to help me. When I hand off the tasks that aren't necessary for me to do, I can focus my attention on those items that do require my full attention.
"The action I call you to take is to give up control of those tasks you do every day that can be delegated. They may not be done as fast or efficiently as you feel you can do them, but they will get done.
"The benefit you will gain is more time to focus on the higher-level tasks and problems that require your full attention. You will accomplish more and prepare yourself for advancement."
Be sure to read next week's Turbocharger Karate Kid: Volume III!
Delegation - your advancement depends on it.
—Larry W. Dennis, Sr. President Turbo Leadership Systems