I Don’t Do Much But I Get A Lot Done

In many ways I don’t do much at all and yet I get a lot done. I do write my blog, my books, my pitch letters to book Schreibtisch.2publishers, and I do negotiate terms on contracts. That may seem like a lot, but in actually does not take that much time. The real work is preparing the proposals to send out, sending out the proposals, coordinating the submission process, notifying the authors when offers come in, notifying publishers that they have to respond because competing offers have come in, etc. etc. Of course for my own writing it is all me all the time, but only until the editing process starts. Then an entire team takes over and spends much more time than I ensuring that the design, the grammar and syntax and all other details are as perfect as possible.  Same goes for correcting my blog, choosing the right picture and posting.

I am pleased with my many accomplishments in business and as an author, but of my business qualities I am probably most proud of my ability to delegate. It is only by delegating that I can claim that I don’t do much but I get a lot done. The key to delegating is choosing conscientious, smart people to whom to delegate. The other key is trusting them and not micromanaging how they implement their tasks. Recently I made a major error in hiring someone who turned out to be neither conscientious nor smart. I caught on to the error in a few weeks, but  in that short time  I did not get much done at all and that which was done was done poorly in some  cases negating  my actual work. Not a good situation and not one I intend to see repeated in the future.

Trust is the most important way you can show respect to those with whom you work. Many people feel that you should compliment those who work for and with you when they perform well. My father, who was a book publisher in New York City, was very old school and never complimented his associates. The highest compliment I ever heard him say to me or to any of his employees was “good”. I probably have assimilated his lack of expressing praise to others, but that does not mean I do not appreciate those who make me look good and  make Waterside Productions an efficient and globally significant literary agency. I trust those I hire and the more autonomy I give them the better they perform.  Trust and delegation. Those are the keys to being able to say,”I don’t do much but I get a lot done”. Try it. It’s a good feeling and it allows more time for golf, tennis, and beach walks.


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