Tuesday, September 21, 2010

How to Delegate Properly

Delegation. It's a skill that can bring great rewards and can also lead to great pain. Delegate properly and you are able to do more, earn more and rise higher. Do it poorly and you can ruin a great career. Inc magazine has an article on this topic that brings some good points out for consideration.

You have to decide clearly what to delegate. From a managers point-of-view it's best to delegate the tasks that bog you down or that you are not good at performing. In my business there are many tasks and details that have to be nailed down in a very specific manner to keep projects going well. In the beginning of a project is not the time for me to delegate. Once a project is properly started then it's time to delegate. The routing of proofs or samples or changes in details are great to delegate. If it's core to my personal success then I need to be more hands on with the activity.

Another key point is
to match a delegated activity with the level of the person. If the task is to negotiate a large subcontracting job and the person is new or inexperienced, then that's not a good fit. If someone is a skilled person making a good wage, then s/he is the one to give the more critical task. If s/he doesn't want the task then it may be time to evaluate whether that person is key to the company.

Communicate clearly. A big mistake in delegation is when instructions or directions are muddy. If I don't give clear and measurable direction then I can't hold someone accountable for a specific outcome. Too often a leader gives vague direction while expecting specific outcomes.

Delegation is a key trait to any leadership role. This article offers much to absorb.

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