You have reached your office in the morning, had your coffee and started with daily activity and to-do list, suddenly and email pop-up, reminder, notification on your phone maybe it is a tweet. Another Email pop-up, WhatsApp message, phone rings and again and again. Things keep showing up that push your proprieties down. That makes you feel what to do? Everything is important and you should get the job done!
Your inner self-talk starts the dialog; why don’t you respond right now on that Email it seems important? Why don’t you answer that call? Come-on reply to the WhatsApp it won’t take a moment! You should attend that meeting no one will solve the issue except you! And that report needs to be done today as well!
You are getting stressed, energy level going down and anxiety going up. Self-talk starts again to ping in your mind; time is not enough, I won’t be able to finish all this, OK why don’t I ask one of my team to finish the report? No, he won’t be able to do it, mmmm ok why don’t I ask my team leader to attend that meeting? No, only me who can solve this issue. mmmm ok let’s not respond on this Email now? No, if I respond that will make the sender satisfied and that will have a good impact on me!
It’s 10 pm and you still at the office, totally exhausted and? you know the answer; Nothing happened, you leave the office feeling? You know the answer; totally burn-out with zero energy and satisfaction.
All that goes in your mind now is Time management, but imagine Time as a cup, what happened when you keep pouring water in that cup till it is full but you keep pouring?
It is not the 8 hours which you need to manage, it is what you do in those 8 hours!
So, what should I do? Delegate, delegate, and delegate!
WHAT IS DELEGATION?
To delegate is to assign any authority to another person (normally from a manager to a subordinate) to carry out specific activities. However, the person who delegated the work remains accountable for the outcome of the delegated work.
In my coaching sessions that cover career coaching or executive coaching, the client usually says; I do delegate, of-course I delegate! My question will be; what do you delegate?
There is a difference between Assign responsibilities and Delegation
Assigning responsibility to the team is a work-as-usual concept it is a task that he/she will be doing as part of their job description, on the other hand, Delegation is assigning your power to act and decide to someone else under your responsibility.
WHY DO MANAGERS AND EXECUTIVES FAIL TO DELEGATE?
Many of us know the benefits and aims of delegation. But in reality, managers and executives become discontented when they hear this word, as it seems to them that in the delegation, they will lose their authority and their power. They naturally will go into the self-defense mode with the excuse of; it will take more time to explain and train the person, I am the only one who can do this, I don’t trust my team capability to do this! And so on. The inner perfectionist keeps pushing you to “But I can’t delegate this!” trap but all these fears are a myth. Hence top reasons for failure are;
- They think delegation is just passing off work to someone else, so they don’t do it and ends up wasting their time as well as the company’s time
- They think they can do it better, which is a sign that you need to build more trust in your team
- They’re nervous about letting go, they feel they are in power when they tend to do everything themselves.
- Lose the image of “I-know-it All”, however, you should understand that your team success is your success. The credit will still come back to you but as a leader not as a doer
- They’re worried delegating will take longer than just doing the work, which is true the first time you start to delegate a task but over time it will decrease and free yourself for what is more important.
Delegation does not mean delegate it and forget it or micromanaging, either. Delegation is a high-level leadership skill that can be learned and enhanced by the time.
Leadership expert James McGregor Burns introduced the concept of transformational leadership in his 1978 book, “Leadership”
He defined transformational leadership as a process where “leaders and their followers raise one another to higher levels of morality and motivation.”
Would you think this can have happened without delegation?
WHY IS IT IMPORTANT TO DELEGATE?
As a leader or manager, you need to learn and accept delegation for the following reasons.
- You can’t and shouldn’t do everything yourself.
- Your primary job is to make sure that others are doing what they have been assigned to accomplish.
- Delegation allow yourself time to plan, effectively manage and monitor permeance
- You are not dumping on people by delegating, you are assigning responsibility for outcomes along with the authority to do what is needed to produce the desired results.
- Delegation is not a sign of weakness; it’s a sign of a strong leader.
- Delegation empowers your team, builds trust, develop new skills and gain knowledge.
Delegation reflects a high level of respect for your team and tends to have a high level of commitment in return from your team to the organization and yourself!
WHAT TASKS TO DELEGATED?
Efficiency is a key factor of success in any process, despite delegation is an extremely important skill for a leader but not everything shall be delegated.
The following represents the ideal tasks to be delegated:
- Tiny and Tedious: Little things and mindless tasks that do not add to you any value but consume your time. Such as scheduling meetings, booking flight or copy-paste repetitive information. You definitely agree with me that those could be and must be delegated, don’t you?
- Easy-Peasy: Tasks that could easily be explained to someone else to complete, if it does not require expertise that only you can provide, then delegate it.
- Not your core: tasks that require skills you don’t have and shall take you lots of time to accomplish it. It’s better to delegate those tasks and save your time.
New managers or leaders usually emotionally attached to their old role; they perform tasks that no longer part of their job. If you recently to a higher role, just hand over any task or project in the pipeline to your successor.
How to Delegate Tasks Effectively?
HERE ARE A FEW TIPS TO HELP YOU DELEGATE EFFECTIVELY.
Don’t delegate overnight, communicate with the team, make them understand why you delegate, transfer your vision and make them feel you are empowering them.
Choose the right candidate for the job
You know each of your team members’ skills and capabilities. Chose the right person for the right task, this matching is essential to succeed in your delegation process. For Example, don’t delegate a tedious task to a super highly active person.
You are the guru of what you do, don’t expect your team will be just “plug-and-play” the assigned task. Provider the information, know-how, milestones, deadline, etc.
Make sure the person tasked with the job got the skills and tools to succeed and that happen through proper training. Explain, take them through the process, do it yourself then let them do it.
Delegate authority not only responsibility:
Empower the person with the authority that accompanied the responsibly. That empowers him/her while performing the task. If he needs to go back to your with ever step for a decision, it will end up that he is doing your work and both of you will lose your time.
Monitor results and provide Feed-forward
Nothing worse than blame mode that the manager uses when things go wrong, your delegation does not mean you are hands-off. You are the leader. Instead, monitor performance and give feed-forward.
Feedforward is a concept originated by Marshall Goldsmith_ leadership coach_ which focuses on the future, not the past, one how to change and enhance.
Be grateful to your team, provide appreciation, motivate them and thank them.
Do not expect instant perfection. Do not expect every delegation to work out flawlessly. But do not give up. Effective delegation will increase trust and commitment with your Team,
Delegation sounds easy—and others who can do it well make it look easy—but passing the baton effectively requires a lot of trust, communication, and coordination. Still, if you learn how to delegate—and you do it well—everyone on your team wins.