If you’ve got experience in project management, you know the importance of delegation. Coordinating your team isn’t easy but it’s one of the most essential steps in becoming a great leader.
While amateur managers often attempt to ‘do it all’ themselves, this can only get you so far. Delegation is a far more efficient means of organising a project and will allow you to raise the quantity and quality of work.
As well as this, there are numerous other advantages to good delegation. It’s a great opportunity to empower your employees - as they gain experience and grow within the company. This, in turn, will help your long-term succession planning.
We’ve put together some tips for improving the delegation in your organisation:
1. Create A System
Part of delegation is knowing what needs to be delegated. As a manager, you need to stay in charge of the overall strategy and maintain a balance of control.
This means creating a system to make sure the right tasks are given to the right people. For example, you should be aware of which tasks involve working with confidential information. In this case, you can’t afford to give the task to anyone who does not have the correct clearance.
Good project management requires clear internal processes. Keeping on top of KPIs and other performance metrics will also improve your ability to assess the delegation process.
2. Understand The Task
Before you think about delegating, you need to fully understand any task you want to delegate. Identify the essential skills and core competencies that will be necessary for running the project. Once you have done this, you will have a better idea of who is best-placed to take on the position.
3. Prepare Employees
When you are putting someone in charge of a task, you should be confident they are equipped to deal with it. This means putting in the work to ensure they are prepared.
You have hired your employees because of their skills and personal qualities. Hopefully, one of the skills you have picked up on is their willingness to learn. Give them the full set of tools to deal with the task before throwing them in the deep end.
4. Communicate The Task
When coordinating the hand-over of the task, make sure any instructions you give are clear and effective. No matter how talented the team member is, they need to understand the task at hand. Good communication is absolutely essential when coordinating delegation.
Don’t make too many assumptions about what the employee will know. You don’t want to micromanage but you need to make sure they are prepared. Make sure to check they are prepared by asking direct questions about their understanding.
5. Be Open-Minded
Once you have selected an employee to delegate to, you need to be open to their view of the project. If they decide to take a new approach that has not been tried before, make sure to keep an open mind.
Of course, not all innovation is beneficial. Sometimes it can get in the way. But when it works, it can give your company the competitive edge you need to succeed.
Being open-minded doesn’t mean ignoring your judgement. It simply means being able to accept new ways of working if they will benefit the organisation. Don’t cling blindly to a previous approach but consider the big picture of the company’s objectives. Learn to let go of tasks.
6. Provide Support
Delegating can help save you time and energy but it doesn’t mean you never have to think about the task again. Throughout the process, you need to be available to offer support. This might take the form of advice but it could also involve ensuring there are adequate resources.
This is particularly important at the beginning of the task. As the employee gains more experience in that particular area, you will be able to step further back. Good delegation is an ongoing process that will evolve over time.
7. Encourage Feedback
Feedback goes both ways. First of all, make sure the employee is comfortable taking feedback on their handling of the task.
Implementing effective performance reviews will allow you to make sure the project is running as planned. Positive feedback can inspire your employees while constructive criticism can help steer the project in the right direction.
At the same time, you need to make sure your employees are heard. By encouraging feedback from your team, you can make sure there are no unforeseen upsets. Employee surveys are a crucial tool to developing a clear review system and taking suggestions on board.
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