Delegation is one of the most important aspects of running a business. A failure to delegate will not only tire out the person in charge but also make it more difficult for things to progress further.
Delegating is a task that sounds easy in theory but takes a lot of practice. There are those who may be a natural at it and those who have a hard time trusting and communicating with their employees.
For those who belong to the latter group, we have a couple of suggestions on how you can start improving:
DO’s for Effective Delegation
There are several “must-do’s” that you can keep in mind when you’re brushing on your delegation skills.
Clearly communicate responsibilities
Communication Between Two People (taken by: @linkedinsalesnavigator)
Of course, one of the most important things to remember when delegating tasks is to properly communicate who needs to do a given task and why. As the leader, you must provide the information in a clear and concise manner so that it can be passed along to the next person without the risk of misunderstandings.
Encourage your team members while working
Giving Encouragement (taken by: @linkedinsalesnavigator)
Delegation doesn’t stop after you’ve given out tasks! This is especially important for long-term projects so that your team member’s minds don’t start to wander off.
Being readily available is also a good way of making sure that your people are comfortable with coming to you to ask for feedback and guidance. Of course, just as you give out encouragement, you should also be prepared to hold your people accountable if they start to slack off or mess around purposefully.
In general, we recommend that you avoid being too distant or hands-off, as it will make it more difficult for you to catch issues when they arise.
Analyze everyone’s skills and strengths
Analyzing Individuals (taken by: @linkedinsalesnavigator)
When picking out tasks for people, you need to carefully consider what kind of person is needed for the job. This is not necessarily limited to their ability to complete a given task.
You need to also consider things like their mental strength, their social skills, their temperament, etc. so that you can pick the best candidate and not have to worry about accidents along the way.
DON’TS for Effective Delegation
Of course, to accompany the “must-do’s” there are also the must not:
Although it is important to keep an eye on your team members to make sure that they are encouraged and being held accountable when necessary, there’s a limit to how much management you should be doing!
If you end up watching your team every second of the day, it’s no different from just doing the job yourself. You should trust that your team will do what they need to do. And, when needed, schedule meetings for when updates are absolutely necessary.
IMAGE ALT: Schedule Meetings (taken by: @DylanGillis)
Don’t disregard innovative work processes
Another pitfall in delegation is questioning the approaches of your team. You might find that someone in your team has a different method of getting the job done and this might be a bit off-putting if you’re uncertain about how successful they will be.
But you need to give them a chance! A leader must be open to both diversity and creative thinking. By doing so, you can open up your business to more opportunities for growth.
Don’t promote a negative work environment
As the leader, you are the one that the whole team will look up to. Keep this in mind when you’re delegating tasks. You should also consider internal affairs when you’re handing over tasks to someone. Try to avoid showing too much favoritism!
By being too biased (whether it be in a positive or negative sense) you can really harm your team’s comradeship — thereby causing a pit of negativity that is extremely difficult to get out of.
Four Clasping Hands (taken by: @krakenimages)
Final Thoughts: Start Strong!
If, after trying out these tips, you still can’t find it in you to trust the people in your team, then you need to take a look at the root of the problem. By that, we mean your hiring process!
After all, the problem doesn’t have to be your lack of skills. It could just be that you’ve picked out an unreliable team. If that’s the case, then you either need to start completely fresh or put in the time to put your team through some training so that they can shape up.
In the end, you should know best that something needs to be changed. Otherwise, you’ll have a really hard time growing from here.