We are on a roll with the delegation train and there is no reason to let that engine cool down just yet!
In moving that train forward, I would like to address one of the biggest challenges I see dentists face on the issue of delegation. That issue is the sense of a loss of control. It can manifest itself in the form of dentists feeling they cannot delegate because “nobody will do it right.” Even worse, many feel it will open them to becoming victims of fraud and theft!
I was recently involved in a chat in a social media group on the very topic of “the dangers of delegating.” For many dentists, the only person they trusted to “do the job” was themselves. So best to do everything.
But doing everything is exhausting!
There are some crucial tasks you simply need to delegate to avoid that exhaustion. However, you need to do so in a way that still ensures critical information is made available to you in a timely way so that you can make the vital, strategic decisions your business requires. That is your responsibility as your own Dental CEO.
That is the beauty of my system for delegation. It is designed to relieve you of the responsibility of overseeing tasks that should not be performed by a CEO. However, it does so in a way that creates team accountability and makes it clear when your team still needs to report back to you.
This is not just delegate and forget!
In fact, last month, we discussed a category of tasks where you delegate most of the work to your office manager (or Chief Operating Officer). However, the manager still reports the results of that work back to you. You may not become involved in the process, but understanding the outcome may be critical to the strategic decisions you make.
This month, we will move to another category – one where you may delegate responsibility to your manager to begin the process. However, the nature of the task is one where, as CEO, you may want to play a more active role in the decision-making process.
For the sake of consistency across blogs, we will address another topic in the field of HR management – namely, annual performance and salary reviews.
Reviews should not be taken lightly!
Team members want constructive feedback on their performance so they can feel confident they are making a difference in your office. Your participation will do wonders for the culture of your office as they will value your taking the time to be part of this process.
However, your COO may be in a better position to evaluate the performance of some team members. Their input may be critical. So, delegate responsibility to begin the evaluation process to your COO but retain final approval on each evaluation for yourself.
If salary reviews are connected to these performance appraisals, all the more reason for you to be involved. You want to feel confident that your team is being properly rewarded for your success. You also want to remain on budget. Have your COO provide recommendations for increases but you retain ultimate decision-making authority.
Owners of multiple locations may find it harder to provide meaningful input for appraisals and salary reviews. So be open to some degree of flexibility to best suit your needs.
However, owners of single practice locations will find it beneficial to take an active role. You may not initiate the process. In fact, your COO may still do most of the legwork along the way.
As the CEO, however, the outcomes of the review process are too closely tied to your ability to guide your business to justify a “delegate and forget it” approach. And simply providing you with status updates is also not enough.
You need to be involved, you need to know what is going on, and you need to make the final decision. As CEO, your greater involvement in this process will allow you to ensure your team culture remains intact while also helping you to maintain control of your salary budget!
So slide this task under the category of “Delegate to Initiate the Process but Consult the CEO for Guidance and Final Authorization.”