Home » Quattro Development’s 3 Tips for Effective Delegation
Both large enterprises and small businesses are trying to produce more work with fewer resources. But for small businesses, it’s especially difficult to scale from a founder-led organization into a thriving team of managers and employees.
Rob Walters and Mike Liyeos are the co-founders of the real estate development firm Quattro Development, which has a national presence in spite of its small size. The duo credit the firm’s success to one thing: delegation.
Delegating to a mix of local contractors and trustworthy employees frees up the founders’ time to focus on their clients and scale the business. Quattro Development’s co-owners share the exact approaches they use to delegate tasks in their business.
How Quattro Development Built a National Empire Through Delegation
As a real estate development company, Quattro Development aims to be the premier small-shop developer in the United States. It operates as a one-stop shop for businesses that need real estate across the country.
Rob Walters and Mike Liyeos have firsthand experience with the U.S. real estate market. The duo work as generalists in the business, filling in as needed to lead their team to success. “Interfacing with tenants is probably our most productive use of our time, whether that’s being in the market, driving with them, having dinners, being at conferences, meeting new people, networking, that kind of thing is probably No. 1,” Walters shares.
However, through careful delegation, Walters and Liyeos are able to spend more of their time serving clients. For the two co-founders, it comes down to three things: outsourcing, hiring quality employees, and building a culture that supports delegation.
1. Quattro’s First Tip: Selective Third-Party Outsourcing
Including Walters and Liyeos, Quattro Development has nine full-time employees. While this powerhouse team can do a lot internally, the co-founders delegate certain tasks to contractors and specialists. “Every real estate development project has variables in it. For us, the variable typically is the market in which we’re doing the project,” Mike Liyeos says. This is why Quattro Development hires local contractors, brokers, and attorneys to handle the subtle variations in the locales they develop in.
“If we need to, we’ll talk to a local land-use attorney or a civil engineer who might know the nuances of that city,” Rob Walters adds. “Ideally, we can use somebody we’ve already worked with in the past, so we have a level of confidence.”
Aside from hiring local specialists, Quattro Development avoids working with too many contractors. Walters and Liyeos found it challenging to vet people, so in most cases, they prefer to hire long-term employees with proven track records over third-party contractors.
2. Quattro’s Second Tip: Hiring Motivated Employees
Quattro Development’s motivated employees make it possible for the small business to operate on a national scale. For Rob Walters and Mike Liyeos, it’s crucial to hire the right people.
Quattro Development hires primarily for culture fit, which means hiring people who are self-motivated and don’t require a lot of direction. Motivated employees naturally look for ways to deliver value, which is the best way to keep a team moving forward without constant management. For Walters and Liyeos, this reduces the amount of time they spend managing a team and makes it possible to focus on client needs.
“I think we’ve been pretty good at finding the right people,” Liyeos says. As a result of its culture-first hiring approach, Quattro Development has not only reduced employee turnover to nearly zero, but it’s also improved the quality of service to its clients. By hiring employees who take responsibility for their work, Quattro Development has created an environment where employees take care of the firm’s clients unprompted. “I think once you have that team, then when people outside the organization deal with you, it’s a different feeling than if it’s just people fulfilling a role for their paycheck and couldn’t care less. I think we try to get people to really care about the company as though it’s a family,” Walters adds.
3. Quattro’s Third Tip: Building a Culture That Supports Delegation
Hiring the right employees is a crucial step, but business leaders still need a culture in place that facilitates delegation. This is why Quattro Development is a flat organization. Walters and Liyeos believe that titles only get in the way of collaboration. “Mike and I are both 50% owners of the company and we just aren’t really title-type people, so we don’t have ‘CEO’ or ‘president’ or something like that,” Walters explains.
Because of its unique culture, Quattro Development is able to offer more flexibility to its employees. As long as they generate results, Rob Walters and Mike Liyeos are happy to give their employees free rein. “Everybody knows what their job is and they know how to manage their schedule to take as much time off as they need to enjoy their lives. We don’t make people come into the office. We just don’t have rules like that. It’s just like everybody knows what they’re supposed to do,” Liyeos says.
Building a Culture of Trust and Responsibility Through Delegation
Managers often struggle to delegate effectively, but Quattro Development’s leadership embraced delegation to grow the small business. To date, Quattro Development has completed over 150 projects across 31 states.
Walters and Liyeos are seeing such success with this approach that, at some point, they want Quattro Development to run independently without their daily input. “In the future, we want to grow the company and develop our employees to take more of a leadership role and just have the company evolve into something bigger than ourselves,” Mike Liyeos says.