Success Begins With Trust: Delegating Work Responsibly
In the human body, one bone alone accomplishes nothing, and the same can be said of any business enterprise, no matter how big or small. Great managers who know how to keep their companies growing and thriving are those who can maintain control over sprawling and diverse responsibilities. But sometimes the best way to maintain control is to intelligently hand that control over to trusted employees and peers. Successful delegation requires communication, mutual respect, and relationships built on trust. Here are a few delegation tips that can help managers distribute tasks with confidence.
Delegating Work: Deciding When to Demonstrate Trust
Successful delegation starts with an understanding of limits. Some tasks should never be handed off completely, especially those that involve signing off on completed projects or providing approval for new ones. But between commencement and completion, most large tasks involve subcomponents and smaller tasks that can handed off if managers are willing to have faith in their employees and let go.
Delegating Work: Trusting Employees with Specific Responsibilities
Great managers stay in contact with their employees and check in at regular, or at least predictable, intervals. If you’re doing this, then you know at a glance which employees have been trained on which systems, and where specific strengths and weaknesses are located within your teams. Match the employee to the task— Don’t mismatch tasks with high stakes, then walk away and expect untrained or under qualified employees to rise to the occasion on their own.
Delegating Work: Following up Without Micromanaging
At the same, while mangers should never hand crucial responsibilities off to untrained or unseasoned employees, employees won’t become fully seasoned until they’re tested. Gauge the stakes and take as many delegation risks as the company can afford. When possible, push employees to accept responsibilities that are at or just slightly beyond their limits. Then check in at established intervals and make sure the employees know where to turn if they have questions or get into trouble. Just remember: the closer the check-in intervals and the sharper the scrutiny, the longer it will take for employees to spread their wings and earn real trust.
I will discuss more on this topic in my class at Manhattan College on October 31, 2012.
Image By: lumaxart