8 Starting points to effective delegation

No matter how hard you work, there’s still the same number of hours in a day with a limited number of tasks achievable. With this limitation, your success is further impeded as there are only so many people that can help you!

Well here’s a bit of shocking news, you can continue to shine while reducing your work load allowing you to concentrate on what YOU do BEST! Yep, there are others around you that can take some of your work load off. So throw away the mantle of egotistical self-importance and learn to trust in others.

OK, maybe that was a bit harsh but all too often we believe that others can’t do a particular job as well as we can. Sorry to tell you this but they can, and in some cases, even better! (Hands up from me as I too was once guilty of this!)

Why do we struggle to delegate?

  • It takes up-front effort to organise and monitor (initially!)
  • You know what to do inside out so it will be quicker
  • You believe no-one else can do it

Look at your role. What are you doing that others could actually do to free you. Yes, there may be an expense but if you are able to earn more while someone else handles elements that take up your time unnecessarily, then it’s a false economy to do it yourself and even more so if you’re attempting to grow your business.

So what can we do about it? Well, to begin, look at the following…

  1. Delegate responsibility with authority but remember, ultimately, it is YOUR
  2. Begin with the end in mind (Stephen R. Covey). The end is what is important, not necessarily the route taken. Allow the other person some slack to do it their way thus building trust!
  3. Know the required outcome and be clear in this when passing a task on. Don’t assume they know, inform.
  4. Refrain from belittling due to what hasn’t happened. Yes, this needs addressing but ride the successes. Consider accomplishment rewards or benefits, publically praise their work or express future opportunities.
  5. Support! Be there to answer questions, monitor (but not micro-manage) and ask for progress updates.
  6. Define authority and accountability. What is their level of approach? Do they need to ask what needs to be done next? Set the parameters.
  7. Show due diligence. Agree progress updates. Discuss expected deadlines or timelines. Take time to read submitted reports or have discussions. Where necessary, make relevant adjustments.
  8. Yes, you could probably do it quicker and more efficiently. With a little time up front, you will soon hand over relevant tasks allowing you the time to concentrate on what you do best.

The head of an orchestra can’t necessarily play every instrument but they know how to get the whole group to create a beautiful symphony due to their skill in management. This is no different for you.