Delegate Without Difficulty

Effective delegation can motivate your employees and relieve you of distracting tasks. It produces efficient, productive teamwork that increases a leader’s power and authority. Consider the following ways of staying on top of things while you pursue other priorities:

  • Seek other people’s views but be willing to make decisions yourself
  • Create an assignment log: who gets an assignment, when it was assigned, when it is due, and any comments
  • Encourage employees to be up-front and honest with you about problems they may encounter, especially those that could affect the deadline
  • Follow up personally on every item you delegate, and ask specific questions
  • Ask for a draft copy of an assignment in progress. This will help you predict the quality of the final result
  • Establish a system where employees highlight their progress or problems with their assignments
  • Delegate it and forget about it. Give employees complete control and responsibility in meeting a deadline. Instead of monitoring progress, be available to provide help or guidance

Warning signs of ineffective delegation
You are not delegating effectively if:

  • You miss deadlines and spend numerous hours doing routine or detailed work
  • You are often misunderstood, causing employees to produce poor work or miss deadlines
  • You experience high employee turnover because people feel they do not have opportunities to grow
  • You miss out on promotion because no one else can do your job

Source: Leadership Management Australia (LMA) Newsletter, Sept ‘03

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