Delegating – As a leader, this is one of the most important tools that we have. It allows us to accomplish tasks from the complex and strategic to the routine and everyday tasks that need to happen. When we effectively delegate, or we assign work to others, it provides opportunities to build individual and organizational skill. Including others leads to more employee engagement and higher engagement leads to more productivity.
So on a scale of 1-10, how would you rate your effectiveness at delegating? Most people we ask are somewhere in the middle – about a 5. Why is that?
It can be hard to trust that others will complete the work as good as you would do it. You might also recognize somebody else’s heavy workload and not want to burden them. Also, delegating requires planning and planning requires time. In the short term, it might seem easier to do it yourself. While all of this can be true, delegating is essential to individual and organizational success.
Here are 5 steps to successful delegation:
1. Take inventory and prioritize. Look over your next few weeks of work and capture it all. Resist the urge to think anything is too big or too small.
2. Identify resources. Consider your team members’ strengths and development needs and match the most appropriate person to the task.
3. Take action, clearly communicate and create a plan. Communicate what needs to be done, why it’s important to the organization and why you selected this person. For example, perhaps their attention to detail is crucial to the project’s success.
4. Set milestone meetings so you can recognize progress or help out with some guidance where needed.
5. Recognize the good work that has been done. It’s motivational and it also informs the rest of the organization of what has been accomplished.
Once you delegate more effectively, your stress levels will decrease and you’ll be freed up to work on more organizational strategic initiatives and your team members will feel valued and trusted. So what do you have to lose? Ask yourself, what tasks can you begin to delegate today?