Do you feel like your team is not meeting your expectations or cannot do the job as well as you can? One of the hardest things to do as a business owner is to loosen the reins with your employees. Here’s how to create a plan to ensure you’re developing a winning team.

If you’re a business owner you know the value of hiring in increasing our capacity so that we have more time to focus on other aspects of the business.

We go through the entire hiring process, sort through multiple candidates and then train our new hire – just for us to continue to do all of the work anyway!

Why are Business Owners so Hesitant to Delegate to their Teams?

There are a few different reasons why business owners struggle to delegate, mainly psychological.

”It can be a psychological shock, especially for entrepreneurs used to doing everything themselves. Many pale at the idea of asking managers and top staffers to take on critical responsibilities like prospecting for and dealing with customers, hiring new workers or overseeing production” (

But some of it can stem from the actual hiring process itself and our lack of confidence in the actual hire and in our training of them.

We either don’t think they can actually do the job or that we haven’t had the time or capacity to train them well enough.

Well, if you don’t make a plan to get out of that rut, you are guaranteed to remain stuck in it forever!

One of the characteristics of a winning team is that the team knows and shares the goals. How can we expect our employees to be super achievers, if we haven’t told them what we expect of them, have them agree to do what we expect, and then haven’t given them the space to complete it?

There are two ways to make sure your team knows and achieves your expectations.

Ditch the Job Posting and Embrace Positional Contracts

Positional Contracts outline the key responsibilities (not all) and the results you expect from the person in that position.

Don’t confuse this with a job description, which is typically an attempt to list every task you might ask someone to do–those don’t work, as they miss the point by leaving out the most important thing, the results you expect.

Detailing the expected results is much more effective at hiring qualified, capable candidates than listing the expected tasks. The applicant can look at the list of tasks and think they can do, but can look at expected results and know whether they can produce them.

Detail Key Areas of Learning Your Team Will Require

Besides the Positional Contracts, you need to create a Position Skill Matrix. This is a document that lists the skills that you expect the person in this position to learn, and ‌ the extent to which you expect them to learn each skill. This may include 10 to 50 specific skills or tasks you expect your team to have some level of expertise in, and you need to agree with each team member that their skill requirements are reasonable. You must also agree with the team member on their current level of achievement and the expected level of achievement.

There are two steps to creating a Position Skill Matrix. First, identify all the skills/tasks you feel the employee needs to master. I highly recommend asking your current team for ideas on the skills to be listed as well. Next, you need to determine to what level each position should master a skill. ActionCOACH uses four levels of achievement: Aware, User, Specialist, and Expert.

Aware – This means that the employee needs to be aware of the skill/task, understand why it is important, and how it fits into the big picture. We do not expect them to perform this task, but understand it well enough to perform their other tasks more productively because of the awareness.

User – This means that we expect the employee to perform the task with moderate supervision and understand the expected result of the activity. We’ve trained the employee and they perform this task regularly enough to maintain a basic level of competence at performing the task and getting the desired result.

Specialist – This means that we expect the employee to perform the task at a highly productive rate with little or no supervision. We also expected the specialist to train other team members to the Aware and User levels. They must also identify improvements in how the team can perform them and achieve better results. Specialists may have certifications and other evidence that have mastered a particular area/function.

Expert – The employee has achieved complete mastery of the task/activity, and can teach others. Your experts will have advanced certifications and perhaps industry recognition of their skills, and may be involved in industry efforts to improve their areas of expertise.

Do You Want to See Progress With Your Business and Team? 

Armed with a simple skills spreadsheet and these four basic definitions, you now have a powerful assessment and development tool for your team that you can use to grow their ability to help you achieve your mission.

If you need help with this, book a complimentary coaching session with us for a deep dive into what areas your team needs to be trained on.