Career Girl’s Guide to Delegating


As a wife, mother of 2, business owner and coach, traveling to Europe wouldn’t be possible without a supportive team around me.

As I’ve been preparing to work from Florence next month, many clients have asked, “how are you going to keep your business running, work with clients and look after your family while you’re away?”

The answer, delegation.

But I find that’s a touchy word for most women.  Sometimes we blame ourselves for not being “good enough” at delegating or we judge others who are as being high maintenance or persnickety.

And I used to feel that way, too.

In fact, my old thinking was, “I have to do this all myself” so I shut people out, didn’t ask for help and eventually wound up feeling really resentful.

In hindsight, that was selfish of me.

Why? For two reasons:

  • Because it assumed that no one could do what I was doing as good or better than me, and
  • My insisting on “doing it all” actually prevented other people in my life from growing and developing to capacity.

Today, I feel much different. I now know that it would be impossible to continue to grow my business, serve my clients, and care for and inspire my children without a supportive team.

Heather and Megan

(Here’s Megan, my lovely Virtual Assistant, and I)

If I still insisted on “doing it all” myself today, I would end up impeding my clients growth, being hypercritical of my loved ones and depleting my own health.  (Definitely not what I envisioned when I started this business!)

I’m so proud of and grateful to the women that support me every week including my Virtual Assistant, Personal Assistant, Bookkeeper and Housekeeper. They are brilliant at what they do (and, coincidently, do it better than I) and, because of them, I can to focus on what I do best.

So remember, getting support on tasks doesn’t mean that you’re weak, incapable or high-maintenance.  Quite the contrary!

Delegating allows you to develop others, contribute your best and serve at a greater level.

And, to support you in developing your delegating skill, I’d like to share the Career Girl’s Guide to Delegating below!


Career Girl’s Guide to Delegating

Pretty deskIdentify your top areas of frustration.  Make a list of tasks and activities that aren’t getting the attention they deserve, keep piling up or are just plain weakness of yours.  If you don’t love it, aren’t great at it or just plain keep avoiding it – write it down.

Divide your list of tasks.  Whatever activities you’ve written down in the previous step, clarify which are the ones that ONLY you can do and which could be potentially managed by someone else. For example, you likely wouldn’t delegate spending quality time with your kids but you could delegate the weekly grocery shopping, school pick-ups and daily laundry.

Conquer the biggest drains first.  Think about this: when you say ‘no’ to doing a lower-level task you simultaneously say ‘yes’ to doing something more important.  So by delegating your biggest time and energy drains first, you’ll actually experience a double blessing.  You allow someone else to develop their skills, earn an income and get experience and you benefit from renewed energy and focus.

Delegate!  Thin creatively about “Who else can do this?” Your best option for delegating may not be close friends and relatives.  You don’t want to be made to feel guilty about or have to justify your needs.  Reliable, qualified people who would love to help you can be found on Kijiji, Craigslist or by asking your own trusted network.  Just be clear on your needs, expectations and standards.

Finally, stay focused on why you’re delegating. Assume that there will be some challenges as you begin to grow your support team and don’t interpret early challenges as a sign that it’s not meant to be!  Good help is worth the effort.



Heather Petherick is a master success coach for high potential business leaders, having established her private coaching practice in 2007. Since then, she’s coached hundreds of emerging leaders and entrepreneurs from around the globe to overcome the mindset traps that keep them playing small so that they can realize their potential and create the impact they’re meant for. Her areas of speciality are: • Mindset • Confidence • Communication • Speed of Implementation Her clients include corporate rising stars at WestJet, Agrium, Suncor Energy, Manulife Bank, TD, Royal Bank of Canada, KMPG and PepsiCo International as well as big-thinking entrepreneurs from around the world. She has been featured as a career and success expert with Women Engineering The Future, The Royal Bank of Canada, Canadian Living Magazine and Chatelaine magazine. Heather’s journey from growing up on a humble sheep farm on the prairies of western Canada to building a global coaching business have lent to her signature coaching style that combines both wit and humility, style and business savvy. She holds a Master’s degree in Management and lives in Lethbridge, Alberta with her husband and two children.

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