Managing Time through Effective Delegation

Too much to do and too little time? Delegating appropriate activities to co-workers is a good strategy for leaders to not only manage his/her time, but to also develop others on the team. Delegation, done right, is a win for the leader, the employee, and the organization. Follow IGS’s three simple steps to successful delegation.

Step 1: Plan to Delegate

  • Determine WHAT you will delegate. Effective delegation starts out with defining YOUR responsibilities and determining what you CAN, and CANNOT delegate.  Start out by defining your key job responsibilities.  Decide what you must do yourself.  Everything else might be an opportunity for delegation.
  • Determine WHO to delegate to. Choose the right person – Consider the people on your team. Who has the right combination of knowledge, skill, ability and attitude to take on this assignment? Remember that delegation is a development opportunity, if the person has the right attitude you can help them develop knowledge, skill and ability.

Step 2: Clearly Communicate

  • Clarify desired results. Communicate WHY the delegate was chosen and WHY the job is important, WHAT the desired results are, and WHEN it is due. Clear expectations allow the delegate the opportunity to use his/her own creativity in HOW they carry out the job.
  • Define responsibility and grant authority. Clearly define the delegate’s responsibility and authority to do the task that you are delegating.  If the delegate needs to get permission at any stage of the job, be sure to plan for that in advance.
  • Explain specifically what you want the delegate to do. If needed, train for competency: show them what to do, let them try, praise progress, repeat until competent and transfer responsibility (if appropriate).

Step 3: Monitor and Support

  • Monitor progress. Be sure to let the delegate know you’re available to respond to questions, and let them know you will checking in to monitor progress.
  • Provide support along the way and celebrate successes!

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