Delegation Assessment – Do you need to delegate more? – Part 1

The ability to effectively delegate tasks and projects can serve as one of the best motivating tools you’ll ever have.

Delegation requires a complex set of skills, and it does require some up-front time and attention. Among other things, the supervisor needs to know how to assess the strengths and challenges of each employee, she needs to be able to assess the employee’s ability and willingness to complete the delegated project, she needs to know how to help the employee prioritize, and she needs to follow up. There is a lot going on in the process of effective delegation.

Many supervisors aren’t even aware that they need to learn this skill. Lots of new supervisors have difficulty delegating work, and this problem isn’t just at the junior level. It extends all the way to the C-suite. Recently, I chaired an executive forum, where the issue of micromanagement was raised, initially addressed as a problem for ‘other’ managers in the company.

Suddenly, an executive passionately stated, “I just can’t be sure things will be done right. I’m darned tired, but I just don’t know where to go on this. I think I need to pass on some of my work, but I’m not sure how or when. I can’t risk having things done poorly.”  This forum meets monthly, so we are going to take baby steps with this, because I had a lot of head-nodding going on in this group and there is lots to cover.

Lacking delegation skills?  Here’s a simple delegation assessment:

 

             Look at the behaviors below and then decide, do I do this?                

  • Do you regularly take work home?
  • Do you work longer than your team members and others in the company?
  • Do you sometimes have to do things that others should be doing for themselves?
  • When you look at a task, do you seldom (if ever) think to ask yourself, “Could a member of my staff do this task for me?”
  • When you return from an absence, is your “in” basket overflowing?
  • Do you lack confidence in some of your team members?
  • Are you still handling some of the same activities and problems before your last promotion?
  • Are you constantly interrupted with questions for guidance by people who work for you?
  • Are you still doing the routine details that others could be handling?
  • Do you like to keep a finger in every pot?
  • Do you rush to meet deadlines?
  • Are you increasingly unable to keep on top of priorities?

 

If you checked off four or more, Part II is coming soon. You’ll want to read it. Your employees will want you to read it too – they are waiting for you trust them to help you and the team succeed. They are waiting to learn and grow professionally.

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