Delegating tasks is an essential skill for managers and leaders, and using it can effectively make your business run smoother and maximize productivity. Learning how to delegate will help your team work together more closely and meet deadlines with ease. You'll reduce your workload and increase your job satisfaction. Most leaders are worried about when and how to delegate, but it's less challenging once you know the basics.
What does delegating tasks mean?
Delegating at work is more than simply directing and assigning tasks, it’s really about the level of confidence, knowledge, and authority that you have given someone. You need to get your employees into the position in which they can make their own decisions. While it may take some trial and error, the important thing is that they feel it's their responsibility to solve a problem or achieve a goal.
The importance of delegating tasks
When you delegate some of your work, you're able to focus on tasks that are key to your business's success. Plus, delegation creates an environment where employees can take more responsibility, manage their time effectively, and feel more productive. When you delegate, it communicates to your team that you have the trust and confidence in them that they can complete their tasks without supervision. This encourages them to work harder and accomplish more.
How to delegate tasks effectively
When delegating tasks, set clear objectives and expectations from the start to avoid confusion and make use of the different strengths of your team to maximize output. Here are some tips to help you along the way:
1. Know how and when to delegate
The decision of who should do which task can be tough, but knowing how to delegate work is essential. Understanding the skills of each person on your team will help you to get them to focus on areas where they will excel the most. Before you consider delegating a particular task to somebody, ask yourself these questions:
2. Identify the best person for the job
Consider the skills, willingness to learn and interests of your team members when delegating tasks. The person you delegat the work to would get more done if they were competent and interested in the task. If possible, give employees a chance to explain their strengths to better understand which tasks they will be better able to handle.
3. Provide support in all forms
After finding the right person for the task, you have to ensure they take on the new responsibility and be accountable. To do so, make it clear why you chose them and how this will help your company achieve its goals. The process of developing and promoting trust within the organization is both challenging and rewarding. When employees see delegated tasks as opportunities for growth, they'll take the initiative, make greater commitment, and are likely to achieve better outcomes.
4. Be clear and specific
It's critical to clearly tell the person about their responsibility for the task, what sort of output you expect from them, and when it’s due. By setting clear expectations, they can better manage their time and produce high-quality work.
5. Avoid micromanaging
People will become demotivated and less confident if they are constantly micro-managed. Letting them figure out things on their own is more liberating and they feel more empowered. So before you assign them a task, make sure that you're clear and that they fully understand what they are responsible for delivering.
6. State consequences clearly
It's really important to specify what the consequences would be if the work is unfinished before delegating a task. This will help make your expectations more clear and avoid confusion and disappointments of the team members later on.
7. Don't delegate unnecessary tasks
Cut tasks off at the source by processing rather than delegating. If you can find a way to avoid tasks or accomplish them yourself should you still think it is needed, do so instead of passing them on to someone else.
8. Take feedback seriously
Invite people you're delegating tasks to openly provide feedback on how to improve workflow processes in a positive light. This will show your seriousness in improving productivity, make them feel valued and they will be able to demonstrate a stronger work ethic.
Now that you are familiar with the basics of delegation and how to do it well, you can use these effectively to increase productivity in the workplace. It’s a brilliant way of having others work on tasks that don't need your close attention and will help the team work better together and come closer. This way you will be able to reduce your own workload and focus on the tasks that are more critical. Delegation skills can be difficult to master, but gradually increasing your expertise, step by step, is fulfilling for any leader.