Don’t Be a “Rugged Individualist” – Delegate! (Reviewed)

As entrepreneurs building growing businesses, it often becomes necessary to transform ourselves. Innovation requires shedding our old thought patterns and ways of operating, so we can embrace new ones that serve us better.  Dan Sullivan, of Strategic Coach, outlines this phenomenon in his growth-provoking article, Don’t Be a “Rugged Individualist” – Delegate!

He contrasts two ways of being. As fledgling entrepreneurs, we embody the tenacity and grit of “rugged individualist.”  Perhaps initially we can’t afford to hire out.  We resort to doing everything ourselves, from marketing, sales, technical expertise, service, managing, hiring, training, picking up supplies, cleaning the bathrooms, etc.  But as we expand, this individualism can quickly become stunting, and downright ridiculous.

The maturing business owner must shift from an “I can do it myself” perspective to one of “who can do this better than me?”

Trying to do everything yourself limits the good you can do.  Instead, focus on your strengths, spend your time there, and delegate everything else. In this way, you’ll accomplish much more together as a team.

Where Entrepreneurship Fits into the Cash Flow System

Unique Ability Investing

We love Entrepreneurship.  Business owners emphasize and focus on cash flow over accumulation.

In the Cash Flow System, you first increase cash flow by keeping more of the money you make.  Then you protect your money.  Finally, you increase and make more.

Entrepreneurship is part of Investing in stage 3.  Building a cash-flowing asset portfolio of real estate and business accelerates time and money freedom.

Why Delegation Is a Prerequisite to Creating Your Ideal Life

In the early stages of business, you may be tempted to think that just because you’re good at your craft, that will automatically translate to building a successful business.  But often this start-up strength can become a weakness in the scaling phase.

If you’re focusing on things that aren’t your core strength, you’re going to have a hard time moving forward.  Not only is it demoralizing and damaging to your confidence, but the progress is slow.  It arrogantly blinds you from recognizing the talents and skills of others around you.

Building a self-sustaining business that doesn’t depend on you requires you to scale by building high-functioning teams.  This is the only way to move from the Self-Employed to the Business Owner quadrant in Robert Kiyosaki’s Cashflow Quadrant.

Rugged Individualism Comes from a Scarcity Mindset

Think about all the reasons you wouldn’t delegate.

Often, it’s our pride and arrogance, thinking we can do something better than everyone else.  That perspective prevents us from seeing the potential in others.  And we continue to play small.  Instead of teaching others and re-creating ourselves, we cap our potential.

Another reason we don’t delegate is that we believe it’s too expensive, or that we can’t afford it.  But this decision has an opportunity cost too!  You might save the cost of paying a contractor if you do it yourself, but how much can you actually do on your own?  How much more can you accomplish if you multiply your efforts with a team and synergize everyone’s strengths?

The Two Top Reasons to Delegate

The most important reason to delegate is that if you are not willing to invest in the expertise of others to support you, no one will invest in your expertise to support them.  It’s a law of abundance and value creation.  By refusing to give and receive from those who can help you, you are cinching a tourniquet around your ability to give and receive in every other area of your life.

The second most compelling reason to delegate is that you can be most excellent when you’re focused, not a jack of all trades.  Instead of spending time on non-productive activities that drain your energy, put everything into what energizes you, where you’re doing your best work.

Harness the power of delegation, tap into the skills of your team, and experience the momentum of Unique Ability Teamwork. – Dan Sullivan

Guidelines for Effective Delegation

Don't Be a Rugged Individualist - Delegate

As you begin delegating, be open-minded and willing to upgrade old habits along the way.  Here’s what Dan Sullivan says to do and what not to do, to build strong teams that exponentially expand your capabilities:


  1. Constantly update your key priorities with your team, so everyone is aligned on what’s most important.
  2. Clarify your expectations by specifying how much time and effort you want people to invest.
  3. Give people working with you the support they need so they can better leverage you.
  4. Make sure there is a system in place, so you know when a project has been completed.
  5. Be available for questions.
  6. Let people know if you’re just brainstorming so they know whether or not to take action.


  1. Expect people to read your mind.
  2. Be guilty of “drive-by delegation.”
  3. Underestimate the time it takes to do things.
  4. Create messes by thinking you can do everything yourself.
  5. Micromanage
  6. Be impatient. (Let others grow.)

Start Before You’re Ready

What about you?  Where has rugged individualism served you before, but is now holding you back?

How can you discover and use your unique abilities?  Consider using these tools to discover your unique abilities: The Kolbe A Test, the CliftonStrengths test, The Fascination Advantage, DISC, or the Meyer’s Briggs test.

How can you delegate everything else to improve your productivity? What can you outsource or delegate to expand your capabilities?  A financial team, legal, marketing (technology), virtual assistant, social media, design, editing, syndication of content, copywriter?

How can you harness the power of teamwork with a focus on unique ability?  How can you improve your ability to delegate so you can let go of exhausting micromanagement and get better results?

Delegating isn’t just a luxury of the successful.  As you grow, delegate … but also, to grow, delegate!

Delegate to Build Your Wealth Creation Team

Please stop trying to wear all the hats.  Don’t be your own accountant, CPA, legal advisor, financial advisor, business consultant.

We’ve developed a family office model, with each specialist in our team working in their core area of expertise, to help you keep more of the money you make, protect it, and make more.

Book a strategy call to find out the one thing you should be doing today to optimize your personal economy and accelerate time and money freedom. 

We’ll help you maximize your wealth today and in the future by:

Success leaves clues.  Model the successful few, not the crowd, and build a life and business you love.

Rachel Marshall

Rachel Marshall is the Co-Founder and Chief Financial Educator of The Money Advantage and President of Marshall's Insurance and Financial Services. She is known for making money simple, fun, and doable. Rachel has built a team of licensed professionals (investment advisors, insurance agents, attorneys, tax strategists) to help her clients create time and money freedom with cash flow strategies, Privatized Banking, and alternative investments. Rachel is the co-host of The Money Advantage podcast, the popular business and personal finance show. She teaches how to keep more of the money you make, protect it, and turn it into cash-flowing assets.
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