Delegation is often very difficult for new supervisors and managers.
Many managers want to remain comfortable making the same decisions they have always made. They believe they can do a better job themselves. They don’t want to risk losing control of the situation or outcome. Often, they don’t want to risk giving authority to subordinates in case of failure.
Stop Doing, Start Managing
Here are 10 tips for effective delegation and, more importantly, effective supervision:
1. Delegate early.
Make an effort to delegate the task early to avoid unnecessary pressure. This allows the person to better plan the task.
2. Select the right person.
Ensure that the person has the time to take on the responsibility. Assess the skills and capabilities of your staff and assign the task to the most appropriate person. Make sure the person has the training and resources to succeed.
3. Communicate the rationale and benefit.
Identify the reason for the task and how it will contribute to the goals of the company or department or team. Also, point out how the delegated task could benefit the person. For example, develop a specific skill. that is needed to get promoted. Remember a routine task to you may be a new challenging task to your subordinate.
4. Delegate the entire task to one person.
This gives the person the responsibility, increases their motivation and avoids ambiguity in accountability. Otherwise, different people will have different ideas about who does what when.
5. Set clear goals and expectations.
Be clear and specific on what is expected. Give information on what, why, when, who and where. You might leave the “how” to them. Be prepared to accept input from subordinates. Confirm and verify task goals and expectations.
6. Delegate responsibility and authority.
Ensure that the subordinate is given the relevant responsibility and authority to complete the task. Let the subordinate complete the task in the manner they choose, as long as the results are what you specified. Be willing to accept ideas from the subordinate on task fulfillment.
7. Provide support, guidance and instructions.
Point subordinates to the resources they may need to complete the task or project. That could be people they need to coordinate with, crucial information or Be willing to be a resource yourself.
8. Take personal interest in the progress of delegated task.
Request to be updated on the progress of the task, provide assistance when necessary. Be careful not to be intrusive; giving the perception that you do not trust the subordinate. Keep communication lines open, regular meetings on large tasks can provide this ongoing feedback.
9. If you’re not satisfied with the progress, don’t take the project back immediately.
Rather, continue to work with the employee and ensure they understand the project to be their responsibility. Give advice on ways to improve. This ensures accountability and dependability.
10. Evaluate and recognize performance.
Evaluate results more than methods. Analyze cause of insufficient performance for improvements and recognize successes as soon as possible.
Supervision Success Tip
Effective delegation allows subordinate to learn, grow and be more capable. It allows supervisors to be more productive by focusing on what they are paid to do – getting the work done through others.
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- Copyright © 2012 Marcia Zidle business and leadership coach.