As a leader, trying to do everything by yourself is a sure way to develop an ulcer! However, letting work go can be surprisingly difficult. If you are surrounded by a great team, it’s time for you to delegate. Not only does delegation allow you to narrow your focus, it also is an opportunity for your trusted teammates! Here are six insights to help you delegate more efficiently:
Don’t Pass Work You Simply Don’t Want to Do
Delegation is NOT passing off your busy work. It’s sharing tasks that you can’t do to your fullest and knowing your teammate can impact them more. It’s also passing the mantle to a teammate ready for different work. Everyone has tasks they don’t want to do, so don’t use delegation as an excuse to clean your to-do list of unwanted tasks.
Always give clear directions and expectations when delegating your work, and make sure you’re available to answer any questions. Your teammate can’t complete the task to the best of his/her ability if he/she doesn’t know what you want!
Check in When Appropriate
You don’t want to be Big Brother, looking over your teammate’s shoulder all day, but you also don’t want to leave your teammate high and dry. Strike a balance when checking in. You know your teammate, so use your best judgement.
Think about the Learning Opportunity
Think of delegation as a hands-on way for your teammates to advance their workload; that way you ensure you’re not passing along busy work you simply don’t want to do. Delegating your work is a great way to teach new skills to your teammates. If you want a teammate to start working on strategic projects, get him/her started with a manageable task in conjunction with a bigger project you’re working on, so they have the opportunity to learn alongside you.
Focus on Confidence Building
Hand-in-hand with learning, delegation is also a great way to build confidence among your teammates. Delegation is a form of, “I trust you enough to help me with this.” A great way to empower your team even more is to delegate work that allows them to lock arms with and impress people outside of the team. The more people who can speak to your teammate’s great work, the better your teammate will feel.
If you delegated a project, and your teammate hit a homerun, make sure your teammate knows you are impressed and appreciative! There are many ways to do this; for example, take him/her to lunch; recognize him/her in the team, and continue trusting this teammate with more advanced work.
Delegation doesn’t just free up time for managers, it empowers employees. Do you have an experience with delegation you would like to share? Let us know in the comments!