Delegation is the assignment of any responsibility or authority to another person (normally from a manager to a subordinate) to carry out specific activities. It involves a shift of decision and authority from one organizational level to another.
Delegation is the greatest solution to cope with an increasing workload from and for managers as the organizations grow. Delegation is not just handing jobs off, if it is considered to be an approach to increase productivity and for the team to reach their potential.
Your job as a manager is to develop people. Delegation is the means by which you bring out the very best in the people that you have. If you want the job done right, you have to learn how to delegate it properly so that it can be done to the proper standard.
Plus … You get more time for yourself! AND, reduces your work stress too!!.
Delegation is a win-win when done appropriately. Here are 13 tips to get you started and running:
- Have a plan. Think about your employees’ level of development and how much responsibility they’re ready for. Delegate work to them to proactively and continually develop their competencies.
- Define objectives and standards. Effective delegation requires clear articulation and ample context of the objectives for the task being delegated and the standard expectations for the work.
- Specify the range of discretion. Employees need to know what resources they can reference to accomplish the tasks that are delegated to them and the level of initiative that is expected of them.
- Involve your employees in the delegation process. Discuss what your needs are with your team. Ask them what types of tasks they would be comfortable taking responsibility for.
- Clarify performance consequences. Make sure that your team members understand the importance of the work that you have delegated to them and how successful performance helps you, your customers, etc.
- Inform others that delegation has occurred. Particularly when delegation involves granting rights to allocate and utilize additional resources, other employees need to know that you have delegated authority to a specific person for a specific project/assignment.
- When problems arise, insist that the team member recommends solutions. Avoid upward delegation – what that means is, having your team member(s) turn to you to when obstacles arise while performing the tasks that they are responsible for.
- Evaluate progress and results, and provide feedback. Unless you have formed a very high level of trust with your empowered employee, it is wise to plan consistent progress checks on the tasks you have assigned to them.
- Continue to delegate. Continual commitment to delegating tasks empowers and enhances the competence of the people who support you. It shows your employees that you trust and respect them and that you are committed to their development and growth.
- Go past your preconceptions. Go beyond job title, age, or other factors. Instead look objectively to identify whose strengths match up best with the task at hand.
- Be clear about expectations and timelines. Make it clear that when you delegate, you’re setting people up to be successful. Make expectations challenging but reasonable, and make sure they’re understood.
- Make sure good communication patterns are in place. Do people feel free to come to you with questions and issues? Do you respond to problems with blame and anger, or focus on finding a solution? Especially when things go wrong — and at some point they almost certainly will!
- Resist the temptation to micromanage. As leaders, we tend to value control But to get the most from delegation, set up a reporting structure and make it clear you’re available to help, then step back.
Delegation doesn’t mean abdication or having people to assign blame to. Ultimate team success requires that everyone participates in the functions that drive the productivity and profitability of the business — when and where it is needed. Teams that embrace delegation and free their leaders up to focus on the high-value tasks [strategy, planning, development, etc.] that drive success are empowered and high-functioning.
Leadership requires people to wear a lot of hats and work in a fast-paced environment, to achieve anything close to what you are capable of and the greatness you hope for daily, you must involve, enlist and engage others in your vision of the future!