Mastering the Art of Delegation in Startups

Founder Runway editor
Delegating in startups

The founder of a startup always has a lot of responsibilities: in addition to constantly inspiring the team, one must lead the development of the product and keep track of the overarching strategy. 

Most often, beginner CEOs experience trouble delegating their tasks to someone else, because of the false notion “this is my idea and only I know how to implement it correctly.” Of course they know, but most likely, not all of their duties are “direct”, and they are unlikely to cope alone. We are not talking about the team now. It's about the correct distribution of resources for the game in the long term, which is called delegating.

How it works in startups, why you shouldn't be afraid of it, and what can and cannot be delegated - will be analyzed in this article. 

Why should startups delegate?

Startups most often have no days off, not to mention their founders - mentally they are always at work. That means burnout is shadowing them at all times. Your unique vision for the product is not a reason to waste your time on every little task. The person, thanks to whom the project moves forward every day, cannot be burned out.

What do you need to delegate?

  • Legal matters
If the founder is not a lawyer, he simply does not need to spend time studying the intricacies of the legal registration of a startup and dive into it entirely. Here the task is to concentrate your energy on development and trust professionals. At the same time, it is important to be involved in the process.

  • Finances
The creator of the business must know the entire history of the financial turnover in the company. However, accounting, payroll, and invoicing is a black hole for inexperienced people. Of course, there are not always resources to hire an accountant, but if this is not done only out of a desire to control everything, it should be delegated. Founders need to keep their projects afloat. 

  • Marketing
Copywriting, mailing lists and advertising on Facebook should not be done by the CEO - you can simply collect all the information about the product and give this task to the professional. It can be either a hired consultant or a member of your team.

Consiglieri has gained a lot of experience and expertise in assisting founders with legal matters, management consulting, strategy formulation and other important aspects of the startup management. If you are in doubt, it is always best to reach out for assistance of a professional team.

What should not be delegated?

  • Growth strategy
The founder of a startup must set, change, and control the vectors of business development. Creating and validating business hypotheses, changing the approach to creating a product based on the feedback - this is about CEO’s title in the first place.

  • Sales
“Selling” the company and its concept is the main task of any startup founder. If the team does not have an experienced salesperson, then the main responsibility will be put on the CEO.

  • Interaction with investors
CEOs should communicate closely with investors. Even if you have a CTO, COO and CFO, it is the CEO who should talk about money. If you are fundraising or scaling, it is important to keep communication with your shareholders transparent.

Delegating does not mean giving up important things and standing on the sidewalk. Identify the issues that cannot exist without the founder’s engagement, but continue to indirectly participate in all company processes. Remember: decisions are always yours.

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