Steps to Management Success – Step 122: Delegate Work, Don’t Abandon It

Written By Rick Frishman Published April 15th, 2010


Delegate Work, Don’t Abandon It

You must develop the ability to delegate the right task to the right person in the right way. It’s almost impossible to grow your business without it—because there’s only so much time in a day and you can increase your workload only so much.

WHAT IT MEANS: When you’re encumbered with daily business issues, you’re prevented from attending to the larger issues—business vision, customer relations, recruiting new talent, growth. Especially in smaller businesses, that can be a critical error. Daily stuff has to be done—somebody has to sign the checks—but if you’re doing that when you should be developing your next product or service, you’re limiting your future growth. That said, delegation is not abdication. You’re still responsible for the ultimate results of the delegated tasks, and you must stay on top of them.

ACTION PLAN: Start by identifying the best person for the job (realizing that attitude and willingness to take on new challenges may count more than experience). Next, clearly and logically identify the goal of the project or task as well as the key steps involved. Third, establish clear milestones and deadlines. Finally, be sure to provide frequent feedback.

EVEN BETTER: After the project has been completed, review the process with your delegatee. Taking this extra step allows all the people involved in the task to identify what they would repeat, modify, or change the next time around. It also lets you determine what was learned, how well the person handled the challenge, and how comfortable/competent that person might be at taking on additional responsibilities.

(Excerpted from: 10 Clowns Don’t Make a Circus. . . and 249 Other Critical Management Success Strategies by Steven Schragis and Rick Frishman)

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