Tools for Success Learn to Delegate, to Tolerate Mediocrity, and to Value 20 Seconds

The first article in this series listed more than 25 tactics to increase your business success, all of them based on my experience. I started with nothing and didn’t get to college, so I know you can achieve maximum success, regardless of your education. E-mail me to get the first article or any of the others in the series. Each, after the first, takes a closer look at one of the tactics.

Learn to delegate. You can’t do it all. Yes, you can do the job of many of your employees better than they can, but that does not mean you should. Your employees trust you to run your business so that they get a check every Friday. You have plenty on your plate and can’t let yourself be drawn away from the crucial tasks of setting the strategy and managing to ensure its execution. Yes, it will take your employees longer to get some jobs done. Yes, they will not do the job in the same way or with the same care you would have. It is what it is.

You can’t drive the forklift if you want to grow.

I recall in the first year of business, I was the go-to guy for anything Volkswagen because of my many years as a mechanic fixing VWs. My dismantler came in to my office get me to help him get a VW started. He came because I had gotten him in the habit of asking for help when he got stuck.

When he came in, I told him I couldn’t work on the sales plan, the finance plan, and the new marketing plan if I helped him start engines. I told him to go figure it out. He understood that I had to work on the bigger issues that would make us grow.

I used this lesson many more times over the years. To grow, you simply must delegate. You will help your business and give your employees the chance to get better at their jobs.

Delegate, but do so selectively. Don’t delegate important matters. Don’t delegate so that you can slip away to play golf. Delegate so that you have the time to do what you must to grow your business.

Learn to tolerate mediocrity. Employees vary in quality and skills. If all of your employees had great skills and business acumen, they would all own their own businesses. Learn to deal with those who are, smarter than others and with those that, well, aren’t so bright. After all, you need worker ants.

If you have 20 employees, you will have 5 great ones, and 5 good ones, and 10 worker ants that are great at what they do but are operating near capacity. You can’t hold them all to the same standard.

I remember one of my competitors asked me how I could have 60 employees dismantling cars, when he couldn’t hire 5 that were worth a crap. He wanted every employee to be as good as he was. I told him to look in the mirror, and review the way he hired, trained, managed, and led his people.

Know the value of small increments of time. If you can invest 2 hours today to save 10 minutes per week for the rest of your career, do it! Even if you pains you, do it!

Don’t underestimate the value of saving 20 seconds in a process you do hundreds of times per day. Twenty seconds saved 180 times per day is an extra hour. Look at the processes that are the heart of your business to shave seconds from them.

Would you like to have an extra hour per week? Some folks won’t take 8 hours to put in a new system that will save them 1 hour per week for the rest of their lives. Be smart. Invest in new systems when they will save enough time to make them worthwhile.


Ron Sturgeon, Mr. Mission Possible, has been a successful business owner for more than 35 years. As a small business consultant, he can wisdom and advice gleaned from an enviable business career that started when he opened a VW repair business as a homeless 17-year-old and culminated in the sale of several businesses he built to Fortune 500 companies. Ron has helped bankers, lawyers, insurance agents, restaurant owners, and body shop owners, as well as, countless salvage yard owners to become more successful business people. He is an expert in helping small business owners set the right business strategies, implement pay-for-performance, and find new customers on the web.

As a consultant, Ron shares his expertise in strategic planning, capitalization, compensation, growing market share, and more in his signature plainspoken style, providing field-proven, and high-profit best practices well ahead of the business news curve. Ron is the author of nine books, including How to Salvage More Millions from Your Small Business.

To inquire about consulting or keynote speaking, contact Ron at 817-834-3625,

ext. 232,, 5940 Eden, Haltom City, TX. 76117.