Being in a management role is both an honor and a big responsibility. It means that you are trusted by your employers to supervise and guide an individual or team of people while playing a significant part in directing the progress of your company.
Of course, having the added accountability of a team of staff also means an increased and, perhaps, slightly more stressful and deadline driven workload. That’s where delegation comes into the mix.
There’s a high chance that some managers may feel discontented when they hear the word ‘delegation’, or that delegating work to others will lead to a loss of authority, power and leadership. Let’s face it, we all feel a lack of faith in others to do a job right at one time or another; and for some, letting go of work they would much rather see through themselves can be quite difficult.
Despite those feelings of wanting to remain in control, the inability to delegate is one of the biggest downfalls of management across all levels.
Why is Delegation so Important?
We’ve established that the main reason behind so many managers finding effective delegation so difficult is the fear of putting trust in another person’s ability to get the job done, which is exacerbated by the fact that the person being delegated to is usually someone with less seniority; but the benefits of delegating is one of the most powerful tools to have in your management arsenal if you aspire to be a successful leader.
Here’s why you should start immediately if you don’t already do it.
Simply put, when you aren’t spending your valuable time on smaller tasks, you will have more time,c apacity and energy to focus on more important facets of the business. Managing your own expectations when it comes to what you are capable of aachieving ina working day is the first step, closely followed by making a list of all of the jobs you are responsible for ensuring get completed in a timely manner. Once you have that all in front of you, you’ll soon be able to prioritise the tasks that really do need your attention and what other members of your team could just as easily help you with. Just like that, your extra long and overwhelming to-do list is much more manageable and you actually have the time available to give those more important tasks your complete attention.
Time is Money
While we’re on the topic of time (which really is the most valuable resource for any company), let’s turn our focus on the fact that effective delegation gives you the ability to maximise your time efficiency. Delegation decreases both the level of delays that you experience in deadlines and the time in which tasks are achieved, while leaving more time open for you to focus on the needs of your employees and client base.
Trust and Camaraderie
Learning how to delegate will enable you to develop a sense of trust and camaraderie in the people that you work with – ironically the exact thing that leaves many managers worries about delegation in the first place. Building a good level of trust and rapport with your staff can only lead to good things as you will ultimately learn how best to work together to achieve the results you want.
Develops Management Skills
Not only does delegating work to your team free up your availability to do other, more pressing work, but it also gives you more time to work on your own skills and capacities. In time, you will be able to achieve your goals in a shorter period and, as you become more efficient, your vision will become wider, allowing got you to give more back to your team.
Everyone wants to feel like they are part of the entity that makes up the company they work for. Collective success as a result of delegation allows a team to reach a goal together, giving them that feeling of achievement.
“An empowered organisation is one in which individuals have the knowledge, skill, desire and opportunity to personally succeed in a way that leads to collective organisational success” – Stephen Covey, Principle-Centered Leadership.
When your staff are given more responsibilities, they are enabled to grow within their role and develop their own skill set. Furthermore, by allowing your team to explore new tasks and areas of the business that they wouldn’t usually have a handle in, you will give them the chance to learn more about the company and find new, more efficient ways of completing their own work.
Staff Feel Valued
Delegating work to your staff speaks volumes of the faith that you have in them and their capabilities, harnessing their trust and respect in return. The more valued your staff feel, the more engaged they are likely to be in their work and in your company as a whole.
Once you learn to loosen your grip on the reins, you’re bound to find a whole new way of working that not only benefits your personal workload and stress levels, but will also pay off in a positive way across the company, too.
Change is always a little confronting, so if you’re struggling to take that leap of faith and let others perform tasks for you – start small. I’m not suggesting that you ask an intern to do your annual financial reports or a junior team member to work on a large project, but by allocating smaller jobs to people that you trust, you’re taking your first steps towards the world of delegation.
TOP TIP! If you fear the job won’t be done to your standards, give your staff the best possible chance at success by being as clear and concise in your instructions and deadlines as you can be. This will increase their chances of doing a good job and lessen your desire to step in and take over. Of course, there’s also the very real possibility that they do a first rate job, allowing you to give them more projects in the future which will free up even more time for the most important stuff.