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The Daily Dot is a daily post aimed to give the reader an edge in business and professional development in 2 minutes. It's purpose is to provide interesting, thought provoking and informative content through ideas, up-to-date information and advice focusing on achieving ‘outstanding results’ within a professional context.

Monday 27 Apr 20

The TakeawayDelegate or Decline?

Do We Delegate or Do We Decline?

Setting the scene of the current experience of employees and readers in these articles is becoming increasingly difficult. 

Everyone is experiencing a different world during this pandemic, and no two experiences are the same. Some people are rushed off of their feet while others have less to do, and some staff have been furloughed.

This article will give you the two reasons why now is probably the time to delegate some of your work for these two reasons:

  1. You have a great deal to do, and the best way to cope with a higher workload as a manager is to delegate some tasks out to your team.

  2. Things are quiet, which means you have the time to delegate effectively and develop people in your team to be able to handle perhaps some more challenging tasks or processes that they would not have been able to before.

Add The Most Value to Your Team

As you can see, there should never be an excuse not to delegate effectively. It is how you, as a manager, can find time to manage and do the things that add the most value to your team. 

With this in mind, here are our top three steps on how to get delegation right.

  1. Consider the task: What would help you out if someone else were to do it? This task should be one that you usually have to complete but that it is not essential that you do entirely. It should free you up to spend more time on your managerial, tactical or strategic responsibilities and always allow you to focus on more ‘high value’ work. You should also consider the complexity of the task and whether it requires specialist skills or vast amounts of time, access to specific systems and information and whether this is appropriate for access by other people. Assuming this analysis works out well, on to step 2.

  2. Consider the person: Do they have the time to do this? Is this part of their development plan or in the right direction of their chosen career path and aspirations? Are they able to do the task? Could they do it with some coaching or mentoring? Choosing the right person is crucial, they have to be reliable, motivated and capable of doing the task, which is why it is advisable that you align it with that person’s development plan or careers path. Do they want your job someday? If so, this is excellent preparation for it.

  3. Consider the process: This is what many of the models cover, and quite rightly because it is essential to get right. Have you ever shown someone how to do something and then been frustrated when they could not repeat it the following week? Many of us have, and we have been wrong to do so. Learning takes time, the level of experience and expertise of the individual, as well as the level of complexity of the task, should dictate how thorough the handover, support and quality assurance processes should be. Delegating is never a ‘one-size fits all’ kind of process and should be tailored every time.


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