Delegating Tasks: 5 Tips for Effective Delegation
Delegating tasks is a great way to ensure that more works get done in less time. By dividing up the workload and giving authority to someone, delegation keeps your team challenged, helps them attain new skills and has a positive impact on the business as a whole.
Managers need to learn how to delegate effectively by planning their list of tasks, assigning it to the right individuals and fostering responsibility and ownership.
What this article covers:
Why Do Managers Need to Delegate?
Delegation is a leadership skill that small business owners must learn. It helps them stay on top of their work and allows team members to learn new skills and take ownership of their tasks. Delegation does not mean assigning tasks to employees. It entails assigning responsibility for outcomes along with the authority to do what is needed to produce the desired results.
Here are some reasons why managers should delegate tasks:
- It will help you save time and concentrate on your work
- It allows your employees to take on new challenges and builds their confidence
- It shows your employees that you trust them to get the job done and enhances your credibility as a leader
- You are tackling too many things at the same time which are affecting your work and health
- Delegations help in fostering a collaborative work environment where everyone works towards a common goal
How to Delegate Effectively?
Map out Your Plans
Before you can start delegating, take the time to develop a plan that outlines exactly what you’re expecting. Unless employees get clear direction, they won’t be able to deliver the results that you want. This is only possible when you’ve thought about the tasks and your expectations regarding its completion.
Assign the Tasks
Create a list of tasks that your employees are currently working on and assess the strengths and weaknesses of the employees carrying out the tasks. This will help you delegate tasks based on the employee’s specialized skills and attributes.
While conveying information about the tasks to the employees, including specific information on timing, budget and context. Also, set expectations for updates and other communications, including frequency, content and format.
Educate Your Employees
Do your employers understand what you expect from them? Be patient, explain the tasks in detail and then make sure that the employees understand all the aspects of what’s required from them. In some instances, you might need to document the requirements and responsibilities.
Foster Ownership and Responsibility
Your employees should be completely responsible and committed to getting the expected results and their overall goals are aligned to yours.
Communication and Accountability
A key part of delegating is an open line of communication and accountability. Employees must communicate the status of the deliverables and its timings regularly. You should also be available for clarification on certain points.
Regular check-ins and weekly written status reports about the progress ensures timely delivery and helps in avoiding last-minute surprises. The reports should outline the tasks completed last week, plans for next week and potential issues that may arise. When a person does a task well, don’t forget to express gratitude and reward the employee’s performance.
How to Monitor Delegated Tasks?
The secret to effective delegation is the follow-up. When you decide to put someone in charge of a project, it’s your job to make sure that they complete it on time. While you should give employees space to work independently, it’s also important to keep track of delegated tasks.
To monitor delegated tasks, you must:
- Clarify the project, deadlines and milestones in advance and confirm their commitment
- Use collaboration technology such as Google Docs, Slack and Basecamp
- Hold weekly meetings to review what’s been accomplished and discuss what has to be done
- Encourage employees to ask questions and be available when they need
The more you do it, the faster your delegation process becomes. Once you’ve mastered the delegation skill and made it an integral part of your managerial DNA, you’ll consistently reap exceptional results.