“It’s so much faster for me to just do the work”. That’s something I have heard new managers say so many times, and indeed that might be true in many cases. Remember - not everything can be delegated nor should they be.
So how do you determine what to delegate? Here is how.
Listen to this 7 minute podcast or simply continue reading:
Make a list of all the tasks that need to be completed. Now on top of the page write down the $$ / hour that you believe your time is worth. Now compare each of the tasks against this $$ amount. If the task is not commensurate with how much it would cost YOU to complete it yourself- then you need to be delegating the task.
As a manager - you not only manage people, you also manage a budget so get smart about delegating!
Would you hire a person with a PhD and pay them the rate for a director and have them do the work of an administrative assistant? It’s the same thing!
Okay! Now you have a list of tasks that need to be delegated. For each task answer these 4 questions:
To whom should you delegate the task to? Think of all your team members - who do you think has prior experience / competency to hit the ground running on the task? While there might be an avid learner on your team who could learn to complete the task - now is NOT the time When you up against a deadline - assign the task to someone who strength lies in the task. Assigning a task to someone who wants to learn is a disservice to both them and your deadline. You will not be in a position to guide them appropriately to make the learning opportunity a fruitful one nor will you be able to meet your deadline.
What do they need to know? What are the pertinent pieces of information the employee needs to know. It’s a good idea to incorporate Strengths into this. For example - if you know that the team member is someone who likes to know how the task fits into the larger picture - then make sure you give them that information in a few lines. This allows them to start working on it immediately and produce the necessary results. If the team member is more detail oriented - try and provide them with as much detail as possible. In order to determine WHAT the team member needs to know beyond the basics of the task - it’s important to understand the Strengths of your team members •
By when does the task need to be completed?My guess is that if it’s crunch time then your deadline is within the next few days? Do you have an option to meet everyday to make sure everything is aligned before the final submission? Or is the task routine enough to simply be completed without having to review it? Letting your team member know that you may/ may not have time to review the work will ensure that they double check the work before submission and will also be compelled to do great work because of your trust in their judgement!
What follow up is necessary? Does the task require you to meet everyday to ensure you are on track because of all the changes that need to be continuously incorporated before submission or is this something that required just one mid point check in before submission.
What happens when you don’t delegate effectively? Well this is how it leaves your team members feeling…
Good luck keeping your team engaged after that! ;)
When you don’t delegate skills and energy on your team are under utilized; and the spirit of innovation, mutual trust, and development is eroded. Effective delegation enables everyone on the team to be working powerfully to move the organization forward. Don’t let a habit, lack of skill in delegating, procrastination , perfectionism , distrust or LAZINESS get in the way of delegating effectively for success.
I know it's hard to recall all these points to delegate effectively especially when it’s crunch time and you are under pressure - so I created an easy to use delegation template (DeleGATOR) to ensure that you delegate effectively everything single time.