Great Leaders Delegate to Others!
Are you holding onto work because you think you are the only one who can do it correctly? Do you have the belief that it will take longer to teach others how to do the work than it would to do it yourself?
I’ve heard those reasons (and countless others) from many of the leaders I have worked with over the years. And yes, I’ve said those words myself!
The truth is it will take a little longer at first as you train someone else to do the work. And, the employee will not necessarily do it the way you would. You might not even have the same outcome as if you did the work in the beginning. But, if you have the right person and you spend the time training, you will eventually be more productive and the work will get done.
Consider these points when delegating tasks:
1. Delegating helps supervisors to get their work done. You have to push the work down the chain of least cost and most efficiency while maintaining a good result.
2. Delegating can improve employee morale and enhance the skills of the employee taking on the responsibility. When you delegate to others it shows confidence in employees’ abilities and motivates employees to show that they can meet challenges.
Follow these tips when it comes to delegating.
Select employees who have the time to spend learning and performing the work. Oftentimes, the busiest employees are the best employees. But don’t get caught up in always going to the same employee for new tasks and responsibilities. Test the reliance and abilities of others by giving them a chance and setting the expectations. If you believe a particular employee has the time and the abilities for additional work, delegate to him.
Manage the work closely at first without being a micromanager. One way to do this is to provide clear instructions (make notes or have the employee make notes), explain the goal, the outcome you are looking for, and the due date. Give the employee some space to work on the project and encourage them to come to you with questions. Provide her with the resources she needs. If the project involves others, make sure you communicate that the employee may be asking others for information or input in order to complete the project and that she has the authority to do so.
Depending on the length of time the project may take, you might want to schedule some specific times to check in. The times may be dates or progress points. If the employee hasn’t come to you before the project is due, check in with him. Ask the employee how the work is coming and have him show you what progress he has made so far. Keep encouraging him; provide positive feedback for the work he has accomplished and remind him of deadlines. If there is little or no progress made, ask him to share with you what is in the way of getting the work done and how you can help him. Reinforce the importance of the project and the deadlines.
Make sure you review the drafted project thoroughly with enough time to make changes before the deadline. Give the employee honest feedback and continue to set expectations. If you see problems, communicate those to the employee and ask her how she will correct the problem.
Most of all, be available and patient. Let the employee learn as much as possible on her own. Remember, the better you are at delegating the more of your time you can free up to work on more strategic work.