Delegation occurs when a senior bestows upon his subordinate, the authority to do a task. It is vital for the achievement of many organizational tasks. However, the final responsibility for task completion is of the person who delegated the authority to complete it. For example, if your boss delegates a task to you, he/she is ultimately responsible for making sure that the task is completed.

Unskilled Employees

  • Doesn’t believe in the delegation.
  • Lacks trust and respect in the capability of direct reports.
  • Does most things by himself.
  • Doesn’t want or know how to approve others.
  • May delegate but controls over every part and worries a lot.
  • Might delegate but not pass on the responsibility.
  • May have inadequate planning on how to work through others.
  • May just throw tasks at people; doesn’t convey the overall picture.

Skilled Employees

  • Delegates both routine and important tasks and decisions, easily and clearly.
  • Broadly shares both reliability and accountability.
  • Likely to trust people to perform.
  • Allows direct reports finish their own work.

Overused Skill Employees

  • May over delegate without providing enough help or communication.
  • Have unreasonable expectations for direct reports or may complex the tasks and decisions before delegating them to the point of limiting individual action.
  • May not do enough work himself.

The Map

  • Do managers accumulate tasks, keeping the good ones to themselves?
  • Throw tasks at people without any plan or follow-up?
  • Do they micromanage because they are not sure people will perform?

Unless they can do the whole work all by themselves, both performance and morale will bear until they learn to delegate.

Some Remedies

  • Why Delegate?
    • Time is very precious, and it is never enough. Managers do most things themselves. The major adjustments are better time management, setting better priorities, designing better delegation. Delegation frees up time and motivates. It develops people and gets more work done. Learning to delegate is a major skill leader are supposed to learn. Several executives who still have not learned to delegate usually don’t have the time to develop others, leading to their hesitation to delegate because their people aren’t good enough.
  • How To Delegate?
    • Delegation involves communicating and setting goals. People should be aware of the expectations. One of the most common problems with delegation is incomplete communication leading to frustration, a job not done properly the first time, rework, and an unwillingness to delegate next time. Poor communicators need to take more time managing because of rework.
  • More What And Why, Less How –
    • The best delegators are clear on what and when, and more open on how. People are more influenced when they can determine the how for themselves. Inexperienced delegators include the how which turns the people into task appliances instead of a motivated staff. Tell them what and when and for how long and let them survey how on their own. Besides being more encouraging, it’s also flourishing for them. People are more motivated when they know where this task fits in the grand scheme so, tell them why this task needs to be done, its importance to the goals of the organization.
  • What To Delegate?
    • Delegate more whole tasks than parts. People are more motivated by whole tasks. Delegate those things that others can do, and you can’t do well. One simple and effective way is asking your people how they can help you. You certainly won’t agree to everything, but if you are now a poor delegator, they will help you improve.

Some more remedies to consider:

  • Who To Delegate To?
    • Managers can’t delegate because their people are not good enough. Sometimes they obtain a weak staff from the previous manager. It is not possible for them to fire anyone. Switching to a role of a teacher can help. Always explain your thinking. The role of a teacher is to teach someone how to think and act like you do.
  • Delegate For How Long?
    • Often managers delegate and set time limits according to their own capabilities. For many things, the manager can do the task faster and better. Always allow more time in the schedule than it would take you to do it, remembering how long it took when you started to learn how to do this task. Get the person to whom you are delegating to help you set a genuine time schedule. When you are going to delegate, start earlier in the project.
  • Mixing And Matching –
    • All your people have different skills and latitudes. Good delegators equalize the size and involvement of the delegated task with the capacity of each person. Delegation is not a versatile activity. Most people prefer developing tasks to those they could do in their sleep; so, it’s fine to give each person a task slightly bigger than his capability.
  • Delegation As Development –
    • People grow by being assigned tasks they have not done before. With the help of delegation, managers assign new responsibilities to employees. This allows them to work on tasks that are different from their routine work, helping them to develop new skills and discover hidden talents. This way delegation leads to the development of employees by providing them to expand their area of operation and helping them to grow. Effectively management builds up their prospects and raises future managers.

Delegation is a way for organizations to distribute the authority to operate to all levels of the organization from the top to the bottom. It is the assignment of any authority usually from a manager to a subordinate, to carry out specific activities. However, the person who delegated the work remains accountable for its outcome

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