It’s a point of pride for business owners that they “wear a lot of different hats”, or have their “fingers in many pies” (insert your cliché of choice here). If you’re proficient at it and are able to manage everything, then more power to you, but it’s important to draw the line somewhere so that it doesn’t all fall apart.
Know Your Limits
We all have our limits. It’s easy to delude ourselves through pride, ambition, or what-have-you and overstep our personal limitations, which can ultimately result in burnout and great harm to your company.
Burnout can be difficult to identify when you’re suffering from it and take a lot of time to recover from, so it will be of great benefit to you and your company to take stock of your strengths, weaknesses, and especially your limitations at the first so that you can avoid burnout entirely before it can take hold.
What if You Don’t Have a Choice?
Probably the chief reason that business owners end up doing the jobs of multiple people is because those multiple people don’t exist.
Whether it’s because you have a brand-new startup with very little running capital or you simply cannot afford to pay more employees to handle various departments, the owner sometimes has no choice but to step in and fill the deficit him or herself. When this occurs, it behooves you to figure out a way to keep your own workload at a manageable level.
One way to achieve this is to triage the tasks and projects required by your business so that the work which is nonessential can be placed on hold until you have some help to complete it at a later time.
Is it Really Necessary?
You have to ask yourself at some point if you are taking on so much extra work because there is no one else to do it, or if you’re just a control freak. Many people who are in the owner position tend to be the controlling type, and it’s crucial that you don’t let this tendency affect your decision making.
Not many things can be more internally harmful to your business than the friendly fire from an owner who continually takes the bat out of their employees’ hands because they have control issues.
No matter what the reason, as the owner, you should be really careful about taking on excessive responsibility. Of course it is natural that you’re going to carry a lot on your shoulders, but you won’t do your business any good if you overload yourself and become completely incapacitated to manage the company effectively.
The best way to avoid burning out is to be always mindful of it and watch carefully how many projects and tasks you’re taking on. You may find that you don’t even need to be doing all that extra work.