Definition of delegation: “Entrusting a goal, project or tasks to someone else.”
Remote work had grown by 44% in the five years before the pandemic. Although all the practices of effective collaboration still apply, a premium is now put on clear and concise communications of goals and constraints—and meaningful and consistent encouragement. Your value as a manager is directly proportional to your ability to delegate.
Keys to effective collaboration
- Develop relationships
- Specify tasks and their completion criteria
- Assign the right task to the right person, including alignment with their own goals
- Explain the task explicitly
- Set milestones and deadlines
- Use collaboration technology
- Have update meetings
- Be available as a mentor
- Granting freedom vs. staying involved
- Immediate training and supervision time vs. long-term time savings from ability to delegate
- Need for execution vs. providing a growth opportunity
Common misconceptions that prevent delegation
- Nobody else can handle the task – because they haven’t been given the chance; chicken-and-egg
- Training takes too long – think of the long-run tradeoff
- Don’t like their approach – you may learn something
- Failure would be attributed to me – then team hasn’t been properly trained
- Time used for training
- Time supervising delegation
- Time team spends performing task
3 Good Questions (discuss in a management meeting)
- Why haven’t I delegated this task before?
- Why haven’t I delegated to this person before?
- What could go wrong and what could go right
Delegation can be a powerful motivating factor. By entrusting an employee with a responsibility, their job will be more aligned with the organization’s mission and should instill a degree of passion, also preventing disenchantment and burnout.