Delegation is like a basket of Apples on the manager’s desk. Delegation is the sorting of duties that require activity, but by whom? Unless the boss likes to be grouchy all the time, she/he will learn to delegate.
Delegation of tasks is an important skill set for managers, and doing so effectively will serve as inspiration to others. Conversely, the lack of delegation causes frustration, anxiety, tiredness and overwork. Effective employee delegation is a key attribute of the best managers, often providing advancement for a job well done. A manager’s position is one of authority, and to be effective, said manager must share not only the responsibility, but authority to carry out what is necessary to become successful in accomplishing the tasks assigned.
Everyone in an organization has a basket of tasks to be performed. Yet in many cases, employees will fail to meet a deadline, and place their “apple” on the boss’ desk. The passing of apples continues until they end up on the President’s desk. The successful President will pass the apples back down the line, ensuring the message is loud and clear that once delegated, the apple (task) belongs to the holder.
Owners and supervisors that attempt to carry the apples to market (you understand the analogy, don’t you?) will spend the majority of their time accomplishing another person’s responsibility, leaving their own work left shortchanged.
Here’s how to perform effective employee delegation (distribution of apples). If one were to look about the organization, capable individuals can be easily identified. It may take some initial training and coaching, but in a short amount of time, they can master the responsibility.
Here’s a brief summary of the selection process:
- Utilize the ABC’s of Things To Do prioritizing
- Choose someone that has proven independent work habits
- Choose a person that has some background in the task, or is easily trained
- If the task is large and timelines are tight, split the responsibilities to several people
- Keep the A (highest priority) tasks and accomplish them yourself
- Delegate the B tasks, but monitor for timely accomplishment
- All C tasks may be delegated, but pay close attention to how and when the task is accomplished to ensure timeliness
The senior managers in a firm more than likely have their own particular style of management, but delegation cannot be something that happens now and again. Effective employee delegation of tasks is the linchpin to efficiency, productivity and motivation. Staff wants to do more than merely their routine tasks. By taking on additional tasks, they have a chance to highlight their abilities, their line of thinking, loyalty to the company, and an opportunity to break the routine.
Delegation to managers is an opportunity to polish the management skill set, leadership style and affording a larger opportunity to “manage by walking around.” Getting things done through others is why the manager was hired in the first place.
Delegation is an arrow in the quiver of the best managers, and rung in the ladder of upward mobility for junior staff to achieve long-term growth goals.