Be More Trusting And Delegate!

Matt| March 24, 2015| Managers

In Disney’s iconic version of The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, Mickey Mouse delegates his chores to an enchanted broom, then falls asleep as his powers of delegation run amok, creating a situation that gets out of hand.

While the tale, based on an 18th century German poem, could be seen as a control freak’s worst nightmare – it also serves as a warning to those who delegate responsibility: Don’t fall asleep on your delegates!

Some people confuse delegation with passing off work or responsibility. However, delegation should be seen like many other tools in the manager’s tool kit – a skill to be learned and then wielded expertly.

An opportunity for both manager and worker

Delegating a task isn’t just a chance to flex your own managerial skills; it also allows your employees to stretch their own. Likewise, understand that you and your worker(s) might experience growing pains during initial delegations. Don’t punish employees who work hard, but make mistakes. And don’t punish yourself for making mistakes either.

More importantly, don’t try to micromanage how a worker handles a delegated task. Allow them to reach the goal while following a set of standards and leave the methodology up to them and then assess the outcome.

Delegation decisions

Delegation is also about choosing wisely. Tackle the tasks that you are best suited for then delegate what you can’t do or a task that doesn’t particularly inspire you. For example, if you hate social media, then don’t feel the need to run the company Twitter feed.

In addition to picking the best tasks to be delegated, try to choose the best person or persons for each task. If you listen to and know the strengths in your team members, then you should be able to accurately determine who’s best for what job. Finally, give tasks to the best-suited worker, not the least busy.

The assignment

When actually delegating the job, make sure you provide clear instructions. Don’t over-explain the job to the point of insult, but provide enough information so that a person knows what is expected of them.

Be sure to delegate responsibility and authority, if necessary. If a worker needs access to a certain computer program, piece of equipment or workspace, then ensure they have as much access as possible to facilitate success. If you trust your delegate, which you must, this shouldn’t be a problem. Managers who don’t delegate enough access or authority might find themselves reporting to their workers or negating a key benefit of delegation – improved efficiency.

After delegation, make sure to follow up on a set schedule, preferably with set milestones to be tracked and accomplished. Most importantly, let the employee do the work and don’t watch their every move.

Job done

Keep in mind that the objective of delegation is usually just to get the job done. If the task requires perfection, then you may need to head up a team or do it yourself. With delegation, set up expectations and let the employee(s) meet that goal.

Once they succeed, give credit publicly. Recognizing a job well done inspires loyalty and increases job satisfaction.

If you’re looking to delegate jobs at your workplace, but don’t have the staffing to meet your needs – consider dropping Long Island Temps a line. We service businesses throughout Long Island and can expertly curate the staff necessary to get that job done right.