When successful, delegating projects to your team allows your department to accomplish a lot more than you could on your own. But successful delegation is definitely not a hands-off process.
Ready to find out more about how to hone your delegating skills? Check out Arden Coaching’s steps below.
Successful Delegation Tip #1: Give Clear Directions
Vague directions tend to yield results that miss the mark. Delegating a project you would normally complete yourself is no different, and you can’t assume that the new assignee knows what you know going into the project.
For example, asking a team member to start succession planning likely means one thing to you and something else to them. What deliverables do you expect from them? How much time should they spend? Leave directions this undefined and you’re likely to be unsatisfied with the end result.
Instead, provide your team member with detailed directions that include any background information they may need to complete the project and a specific due date that takes into account their current workload and schedule. Remember to facilitate introductions between them and others who may be able to help them complete the project. Ask them to explain to you what they’re going to do to make sure your expectations line up.
Successful Delegation Tip #2: Provide Sufficient Time
If you just delegated a priority project with a strict deadline, don’t derail your delegatee by loading down their schedules with additional last-minute duties.
It’s important that both of you agree on a feasible due date. You, as someone who’s done the task before, can better estimate the amount of time it’s likely to take. Depending on the task, it may be wise to estimate how long it might take yourself to complete and add on extra for someone who’s new. If the project you’re delegating requires further training of any kind, be sure to include this time in your projection.
Successful Delegation Tip #3: Check in on a Routine Basis
You’ve laid out clear directions, including a specific due date, and your team member is confident in what he or she has to do. To ensure the project goes as planned, it’s crucial that you hold them accountable and check in on their progress on a routine basis.
If you just assigned a major six-month project, be sure to follow up at various milestones. You can lay these out as part of your directions by asking your team member to let you know when they’ve reached a certain point so you can review their progress together. Getting glimpses of how the project is coming together allows you to further encourage your team member and cultivate a positive outcome.
Successful Delegation Tip #4: Assign Projects That Interest Them
People are more motivated to work better on projects that they enjoy. Getting to know the types of where tasks your team members excel, their learning style, or even their hobbies outside work can help you get better at delegating. If you have several projects that you need help with, ask them which interests them the most.
Make the most of your time and theirs by having your delegated projects do double duty as learning opportunities that will work to strengthen their skills and help to clear your plate. If a team member needs to work on collaboration, put them in a position where they need to work with others.
Test Our Tips!
Successful delegation relies on straightforward directions that the delegator and delegatee both agree to and planned feedback and follow-up. And designing your delegations so team members get to work on projects they’ll enjoy is a win-win for everyone. Follow these tips and you’ll be on the fast track to more successful delegations.
Stressed out and not sure where to start when it comes to divvying up projects among your team? Check out Arden Coaching’s free eBook How Does an Executive Coaching Engagement Work? for more information about how an executive coaching partnership could be just what you need to bring a fresh perspective to your daily tasks and challenges.