The Importance of Delegation
Posted on November 19, 2011 by Krissy Jackson, One of Thousands of Leadership Coaches on Noomii.
You are a leader or a solo entrepreneur working around the clock. You're tired and quickly becoming burned out...
The Importance of Delegation
Do either of these two descriptions sound like you?
1. You are a hard working team leader, you average 12 – 14 hours a day. Everyone can see you are a great leader, you are the first to arrive and the last to leave. Frankly if you weren’t around the whole department would fall apart. You have your finger on the pulse of everything and I mean everything – so why do you feel so out of control.
2. You are a solo entrepreneur working around the clock. You’re tired and quickly becoming burned out. You seem to spend an awful lot of time booking and re-booking appointments with clients, doing paper work and chasing up on unpaid bills – Why is it then that at the end of the month you just don’t seem to have made very much money …hire someone? – You have got to be kidding, you’re hardly earning enough to support yourself.
I am writing this article because I am known as the Queen of Delegation and I’d like to share a few simple tips which could very well change your life.
A friend called me while I was working on my book last year, how are you she asked “well I’m really busy I answered. My editor is working on the last four chapters. My copywriter is working on the copy for the sales page, I have a company building my new website. My graphic designer is busy designing the Cd cover of the audio version and my VA is busy organizing guest speakers to help me promote the program.”
“What are you doing” she asked?
“I’m delegating” I replied.
By the end of this conversation she actually had me feeling very lazy and I felt guilty for a while until I realized that while she was stressing out trying to do everything herself I was enjoying my work immensely. Although the project was huge, and the deadline tight, I had done my part and then trusted my team to do their part. I then made sure that everything ran smoothly by taking on the role of the coordinator.
Remember delegating does not mean abdicating.
When you delegate you farm out a task, however you are still responsible for managing it’s satisfactory and timely completion.
Coach your team. Get to know them, find out what they love to do and find out their particular skills. You must never jump in and take over the job but at the same time don’t let your team drift off and leave them to their own devices. Offer advice, ongoing training, and support. Your team will succeed when everyone in it feels like:
- they have an important role to play,
- that they are being given reasonability
- and the opportunity to grow.
So what are the rules of delegation?
1. Define the job
Is this something you should do or is it better suited to someone else in your team. Or here is something else to consider – could the job be automated. For instance my appointments are booked, changed or even cancelled online without my being involved. I use appointment quest which even reminds me and my client that we have an appointment. My products are sold online from my Easy Web Automation Shopping Cart which sends an email alert to my assistant who contact the printer who then prints individual Cd’s and then fulfills the order, without my ever having to be involved.
2. Find the right person for the job
Who is the person most qualified to successfully carry out this task? Is it something that will give them job satisfaction? How can you package it so that it achieves this result?
3. Let them know exactly what is expected of them – preferably in writing.
Let the person you are delegating the task: know why you are giving them the job, what makes it important, how it fits into the big picture and who they will be liaising with. Also be clear about the final result you expect and how success will be measured. Clarify that they understand what is expected of them in an email, or if necessary with a contract.
4 What do they need to complete the task?
Meet and discuss, what they need to successfully fulfill all requirements of the job. Materials, personal, premises etc…
5 Get written timelines and deadlines.
In order to maintain good feeling, and to ensure the task doer does not feel like you are breathing down their neck or don’t trust them, agree on time lines and check-in dates and times before beginning any job. Do you need timelines. Agree on a deadline.
6 Support give feedback and praise
Keep everyone involved in the loop and give regular progress reports. Feedback privately to individuals when something could have been done better or differently in a timely manner.
Support those having trouble keeping to plan, blame has no place in delegation – at the end of the day this is still your responsibility.
Remember: Please and thank you are the most important words in your dictionary and don’t forget praise for a job well done.
In Conclusion, a good leader does not work single-handedly they surround themselves with a great team, then they empower that team by coordinating and highlighting their various skills.