CEOs who are good at delegating generate 33% more revenue than those who aren't, according to a Gallup study. It’s understandable if you as a manager don’t want to delegate because you feel that no one else can do the work like you do. Even so, you must change yourself, find the right people to delegate to, and accept that you can't do it all yourself.

Table of contents

The Basics of Delegation

Authority

All of us are familiar with the concept of authority. To command others and take action based on your position is, of course, what we mean by authority. As a general rule, the more senior a person is in his or her position, the more powerful they are. Because of the entanglements that exist between job titles and organisational levels, this has happened.

The relationship between a superior and a subordinate is defined once more by authority. To be able to do so, the superior communicates his decisions to the subordinate and expects the subordinate to follow them. A person's job title does give them some authority, but how they use that authority is influenced by their character traits.

Authority tends to be more concentrated at the top of an organisation than at lower levels. The superior is in charge of his subordinates because authority is delegated from the top to the bottom of the hierarchy. Finally, the laws, rules, and regulations of the organisation are also taken into consideration when determining the scope of authority.

Responsibility

Because of the delegating, some accountability has been transferred. An employee's responsibility is defined as the duty to do his or her job as well as possible.

Due to their relationship, this is what happens when someone reports to a higher-up: they are held responsible for the work that their higher-up assigns to them, levels of delegation. Because the superior is always responsible to his superior, the chain of command is always a one-way street when it comes to accountability.

There is an interesting relationship between responsibility and authority as a result of delegation. If an employee is to be held accountable for a task, they must be given the authority to complete it, levels of delegation.

Only by combining authority with responsibility can delegation be effective. Authority can be misused if the responsibility it entails is greater than the authority itself. Tasks that are assigned will go unfinished if accountability takes precedence over authority.

Accountability

In spite of its many advantages for both the superior and subordinate, delegating responsibilities remains a matter of the superior's own responsibility.

To put it another way: accountability is about being held accountable for one's work's final outcome. In the event that a task is not delegated, we hold the superior responsible for the outcome. In contrast, no responsibility is transferred when a task is delegated, levels of delegation.

As a reminder, it's important to remember that accountability is a two-way street. Our final method of making sure people are held accountable is to provide regular updates on the progress they are making, levels of delegation.

Based on these elements, we can say that authority is delegated, responsibility and accountability are assumed, and that accountability is imposed. Authoritative positions confer accountability and responsibility.

How and why is delegation important?

It is a management technique in which a manager delegates a task to one or more subordinates. Allowing employees more autonomy and responsibility frees up management time to focus on higher-priority tasks.

Because these business leaders don't try to do everything on their own, their workers are empowered and their morale is raised, and their productivity is boosted as a result. Consequently, CEOs are able to devote more time to activities that produce the highest returns and contribute to the company's success, levels of delegation.

Delegation is synonymous with the transfer of authority, as you've no doubt realised by now. The act of transferring authority from one level of authority to another is known as delegation. There are only so many things that the boss can keep track of, levels of delegation. Because no one above him can keep up with the sheer volume of work, he is also better able to organise his workload.

Delegating authority frees up an organization's time and resources to focus on its most pressing priorities, levels of delegation. A sense of responsibility and a chance to learn and develop are among the benefits that come with being given authority.

Always remember that just because power passes from one person to another, it doesn't automatically entail the transfer of responsibility, levels of delegation. Bosses are still responsible for their subordinate's work, and this fact is interesting to keep an eye on, levels of delegation.

Transferring responsibility for lower-level tasks to subordinates without transferring ownership of those tasks is what is commonly referred to as delegation in the workplace, levels of delegation.

Taking Advantage of Others' Help and Putting It to Use

Despite your best efforts, there is a limit to how much you can achieve on your own.. As a result, your time and resources, as well as the number of people you can help, are constrained. Because you can only help a finite number of people, your success is also limited.

The more competent you are, the higher the expectations others have of you. A lot of stress and a lot of work can be caused by the fact that you can't do everything everyone wants. It's possible to feel anxious, depressed, and betrayed as a result.

However, if you can find a way around this restriction, you'll be presented with a fantastic opportunity. The only way to succeed is to take advantage of this chance!

Delegating your work is a common way to get around this limitation, levels of delegation. You can build a team that can handle a lot of work if you're a good manager. For this reason, it's so important to master the art of delegation!

Reasons why people are reluctant to delegate

They're Afraid of Being Dumped on by Others

A manager doesn't necessarily have to do everything, just because it is typically their job (unless it is a specific role requirement or depends on a particular level of authority).

In the end, it doesn't matter who does the work. If a team member appears to be overworked, it's a good idea to find out why. If they are occupied with low-priority tasks, their schedules could be rearranged so that they can complete the delegated work first, levels of delegation.

They are alarmed

Those who delegate must be aware that they are only transferring parts of their work, not their entire responsibilities. In this case, it's all up to them. If they delegate many tasks, the manager's role will not be obsolete, levels of delegation. However, they will continue to play a significant role in supporting and guiding the team, and they will always remain ultimately responsible for the work.

You should not be concerned about someone else performing a task superior to yourself. All the more reason to give it to them if they're good at it! The goal is to make your team more efficient and effective, as well as to give others the opportunity to use and develop their own abilities, levels of delegation.

They don't want to let go of their grip

Work that has been delegated will take time for new employees to learn how they can do it as well as their predecessors. Things will take longer to begin with, and the quality may suffer as a result. But if you have the right support and guidance, these obstacles can be easily overcome, levels of delegation.

They believe that doing it themselves will save them time and money

Learning something new takes effort on the part of everyone. It is important to provide as much assistance as possible so that they can begin working independently as soon as possible, levels of delegation. As a result, those who are delegating work should ensure that they give clear instructions and provide plenty of guidance as well as praise, feedback, and reassurance to build confidence.

Tips for Managers on Delegation

Identify the Tasks You Can Hand Over to Others

There are some tasks that cannot be delegated. You should be in charge of things like performance evaluations and other personnel matters. Hiring the right people and getting to know their strengths and weaknesses will help you better delegate tasks and transfer accountability to the appropriate team members in the long run, levels of delegation.

However, there are a number of everyday tasks that don't need your attention. Is there a task that you do even though you know your coworker would be better suited for it? Is it a good idea to delegate the project to other employees? Delegate the work if you think someone else could do it better or if you see this as a teaching opportunity, levels of delegation. It will show that you trust and value your team, while also allowing you to devote more time to more strategic endeavours.

As a manager, take advantage of your employees' strengths and aspirations. As part of achieving those goals, there should be opportunities for employees to delegate responsibilities, levels of delegation.

As an example, if you have a direct subordinate who is interested in becoming a manager, you could help them out. Does the company have an intern they could take on as a mentor or a clearly defined project they could take charge of? The type of work you delegate may influence their professional development, levels of delegation.

Depending on the nature of the project, your team may already have the necessary expertise to complete it. Play to your employees' strengths and take advantage of that. Having a better chance of succeeding motivates and engages employees, which benefits the entire company, levels of delegation.

Make a list of what you want to achieve

Delegating isn't about dumping work on someone else's shoulders. When you hand off projects, make sure they have a clear connection to the organization's goals. Every member of the project team should know exactly what they need to accomplish and when, as well as what success metrics you'll be using, levels of delegation.

Make sure the right resources and authority are in place

When you assign a project to someone, it's your job as a manager to make sure they have all of these things they need to succeed: training, resources, and authority. An impossible task will frustrate both you and your coworker; your colleague will not be able to achieve the desired outcome, and you will likely have to reschedule that work, levels of delegation.

You must also resist the temptation to micromanage here. Step-by-step instructions and complete control over the process won't help your coworker learn or develop new skills. Rather than focusing on the task's end goal, why it's important, and how it differs from their current skill set, focus on the end result, levels of delegation.

Establish a Streamlined Method of Communication

Establishing a communication channel between you and your delegate so that he or she feels comfortable asking questions and reporting on progress is important, levels of delegation.

Allow for the possibility of failure

Because they believe that their method is the only one that will get the job done, perfectionists often avoid delegating out of fear of losing control. For the sake of experimentation and the empowerment of the people you delegate tasks to, you need to allow for failure not because your employees might fail but because it will allow them to take a new approach, levels of delegation.

In order to effectively delegate, you need to be flexible in your thinking

Wait for the right time

In your position, you've likely accrued more work experience than the average worker. The first time an employee completes a task, it may take them an hour to complete something that normally takes them 30 minutes.

Be patient with your employees, even if you think you can complete a task faster than they can, because they will appreciate it. Recall a time early in your career when you completed a specific task for the first time. When you were younger, you may not have been as effective at managing your time as you are now, levels of delegation.

Your work will get done more quickly as you continue delegating and your employees become more familiar with the tasks at hand.

Additionally, you should provide constructive feedback to your employees once the tasks they've been delegated are completed.

Don't be afraid to offer constructive criticism if a task isn't completed as expected. Your employees can apply what they've learned from this to the next time they're tasked with something similar. As an alternative, don't forget to congratulate your coworkers and express your gratitude when they succeed, levels of delegation.

Delegating effectively also means getting your team's input and making use of it. Ask your employees if you gave them clear instructions and see if you can improve the delegation process in the future.

Efficiently Delegating Tasks

Identify the ideal candidate for the job

Becoming a good manager requires taking the time to get to know your employees on a personal level. Consider assigning work that necessitates a lot of group collaboration to a colleague who prefers to work independently. Give it to someone who enjoys working with others, levels of delegation.

Performing the audit outlined in Section 2.1 may have helped you delegate tasks. Your team members could vote on which tasks they want to take on instead of being assigned a specific set of tasks, levels of delegation.

If you want to instil a sense of ownership and commitment in your employees, you can allow them to choose the tasks they'll be responsible for, as well, levels of delegation.

There must be a good reason for delegating this task to someone else. You should explain why you're delegating a task to someone you don't know when you do so.

Allow others to exercise decision-making authority

At times, you have been given a task and yet have not felt fully empowered to make the decisions you were expected to, levels of delegation. Because of this hiccup, both the manager and the employee must work longer to complete their tasks.

Allow your employees to make their own decisions, ask questions, and take the necessary steps to complete their tasks, and don't micromanage them!

A manager's worst nightmare is when something goes horribly wrong when a task is delegated to a worker.

Your employees' work should be reviewed after they've completed it to ensure they did it correctly and give them any feedback they need to improve their performance in the future, levels of delegation.

Aim to Improve Task Delegation

Whether you're a manager, a business owner, or some other type of person who has a lot of responsibility, delegating is an essential skill. When it comes to delegating, however, many entrepreneurs and leaders either don't know how or are only willing to do so when they have no choice.

Learn how to let go

The inability to let go of one's own work is a common problem for new bosses and leaders. As a result, they may refuse to accept help from others because of their strong work ethic. Some people are worried that no one else has the necessary abilities, and this is understandable, levels of delegation.

You must first learn to let go, no matter what the situation. Delegating only the most basic tasks is the best way to start small and gradually increase your workload. Increase the level of trust you have with your coworkers by developing a stronger sense of camaraderie. To be a successful member of a team, you must gradually learn to relinquish control of your work.

List of priorities

Begin creating a list of priorities as part of the release process. Based on your expertise, industry, and typical tasks, create at least four categories based on the effort and skill required to complete a task.

Delegating tasks that don't require as much expertise is preferable to keeping those that do. Remember to factor in the amount of time you'll save by delegating labor-intensive tasks to people with less experience, levels of delegation. Setting priorities is the first step to delegating effectively.

Be sure to take advantage of your employees' skills

To be effective, leaders must become adept at reading the cues their employees give off. Each person should be evaluated on their current and future skill sets, as well as their strengths and weaknesses.

Assign tasks to those on your team who have the most relevant skills for the task at hand, levels of delegation. Even though it may seem obvious, many managers choose to delegate tasks to those who have the least authority or the most free time.

Instructions should always be included

Make sure each task has clear instructions before delegating it to someone else. Be specific about how you want this assignment to be completed. Make sure you are aware of any upcoming deadlines or milestones.

At the beginning of a project, avoid communication gaps by giving clear and concise instructions. A proactive strategy that will benefit both you and your employees is the goal here, levels of delegation.

There is no reason to be afraid of teaching new skills

You can still delegate work if no one on your team is capable of completing a specific task on your to-do list. If you're delegating, don't be afraid to impart knowledge; most skills can be learned, though some are easier to pick up than others.

Even if it takes more time than it saves, you should look at delegating your first few tasks to an employee as an investment. Because of this, you will be able to assign that person to perform similar tasks in the future, saving you even more time than you invested in training this individual to do so, levels of delegation.

Always double-check your findings

If you delegate a task to a teammate, you should trust that person to complete it on his or her own accord. This will allow the individual to approach the task in a way that is most comfortable for them.

As long as things are going according to plan, don't be afraid to jump in and see how things are going. Trust your employee, but if you gave them an assignment a week ago and it's due tomorrow, send them an email to make sure nothing has slipped their mind, levels of delegation.

Delegation is a two-way street, and the only way to know if you're doing it right is by getting feedback from the people you're delegating to.

If you're a manager, delegating tasks isn't always easy, but if you start sooner rather than later, you'll get better. Never give up trying; instead, look at your failures as a chance to improve, and keep trying again, levels of delegation.

What are the characteristics of delegation?

If you want to give your employees the authority and direction they need to complete various tasks, you need to know how to delegate effectively. Delegating tasks to other members of your team is a great way to lighten your load while also ensuring that no one forgets or neglects these projects. Finding the right person for each task and motivating them to complete it successfully can improve a team's project output significantly.

The ability to effectively communicate the task and its specific instructions to the designated employee is an important delegation skill.. Employees who are treated with respect and have clear expectations of their work from their managers are more likely to succeed, levels of delegation.

Keeping track of one's schedule

Success in your organisation or department is still dependent on effective time management even after delegating some of your duties. Prior to a task being delegated, it is customary to communicate its completion date, as well as any additional deadlines, to the new owner, levels of delegation.

Training

The success of task delegation depends on the team members' ability to complete the assigned task. When you regularly delegate tasks to employees, you should use training skills to help them become better at their jobs.

Trust

Delegating tasks to an employee who you can trust to get the job done is a good sign of trustworthiness. Allowing employees some freedom in how they go about completing a task can also contribute to a culture of trust.

What are the advantages of being able to effectively delegate tasks?

  • As a result, your employees will have a greater sense of self-determination.
  • Managers who believe in their employees' abilities can improve their team's morale and productivity.
  • It creates a sense of camaraderie among the group members.
  • When you delegate a task, it means that you have faith in another person's ability to complete it successfully. In the workplace, trust between coworkers can grow as they become more familiar with each other's abilities.
  • It allows you to save time.
  • Delegation done well can free up time that can be put to better use toward achieving the goals of your organisation.
  • It's a great way to help your employees learn new skills.
  • There are many ways in which a team member can learn new skills that will benefit both the organisation and his or her career if he or she receives appropriate training.

How can you become better at delegating?

Let go of some of the burdens that you can no longer handle on your own.

Developing the habit of delegating tasks is one of the most challenging things for managers and team leaders to do well. Passion for your work and a lack of trust in your team members are two common reasons for not delegating tasks.

The first step in improving your delegation abilities is to place your trust in others. As you gain confidence in your team, you can gradually delegate more complex tasks to them.

Organize tasks into a logical hierarchy

The importance and difficulty of each task must be taken into consideration when assigning tasks and determining who should do what. A task prioritisation system tailored to your department's specific requirements can help you improve your delegation strategy, levels of delegation. Delegating tasks based on the difficulty, experience, and specialties and skills of your employees is now possible.

Your team's strengths should be taken into consideration

Consider your team members' strengths and weaknesses when deciding on criteria for delegating tasks. Delegating work to members of your team according to their strengths may help them better meet project deadlines. If a task is delegated to an employee who is strong in their area of expertise, they may grow as a result.

Take the time to show your coworkers how to do the job

The key to effective delegation is to provide team members with clear instructions. This can include any details pertaining to the task's completion, such as deadlines, milestones, and other requirements that the employee must meet, levels of delegation. Detailed instructions before the employee begins work will help them better understand your expectations and avoid communication snags.

Make sure your employees are aware of the latest advancements in their field

To complete a task, if you don't have anyone on your team with the necessary skills, it may be more efficient to teach them those skills rather than do the work yourself.

In this way, the team will be ready for future projects of this type. You can adapt your training to meet the needs of your team, whether they prefer written materials, demonstrations, lectures, or a combination of all three, levels of delegation.

One of the most important aspects of delegation is developing trust in your employees and knowing when to check in on how they're doing. As some team members thrive when left to their own devices, others thrive when they are constantly monitored, there is a fine line that must be struck between autonomy and supervision. You'll be able to accomplish more as a team if you get to know your coworkers and learn about their working styles.

Get a handle on how to give constructive criticism

You must be able to give your employees feedback in order for them to better understand how they are performing and how they can improve their own performance.

Make it a point to solicit feedback from your team members on how you're delegating tasks; providing instructions; and following up on project completion. It's critical to practise giving and receiving feedback on a regular basis and to model this behaviour for your employees.

Powerful Delegation at All Levels

Delegation at the Level of Assessment and Reporting

For the majority of new or inexperienced employees, delegation begins at the Level 1 position. If an employee is willing and able to take on the responsibilities of a new role right away, there is nothing wrong with giving them the opportunity, levels of delegation.

It is possible, however, that a worker will be able to gain new skills and confidence as they rise through the ranks of their employer. Level 1 delegating tasks are all about gathering and evaluating information. For urgent business issues, you can ask your employees to write a report on the matter for you.

Analyze the information provided and make any necessary decisions based on your findings. Employees will rise through the ranks if they have a better understanding of your thinking process.

Delegation at the second level: Recommendation

Once employees have demonstrated their proficiency in Level 1 delegation tasks, move them up to the recommendation-making level of delegation. In addition to performing Level 1 work, employees will also be expected to recommend and justify the best solution for their company.

Choose the best option after considering all of the possibilities and evaluating the quality of the recommendation. When making decisions, it's important to explain the rationale behind them to your employees, levels of delegation.

Delegation at the third level: creation of a strategy

Keep in mind that the authority delegated to others is increasing. As a general rule, workers should have completed Levels 1 and 2 by the time they reach Level 3. Three levels of delegating authority exist: recommendations, action plans, and implementation.

The form and content of the report are entirely up to you. After the plan has been submitted, review, approve, and supervise its implementation. In the same way that you would with any other level of decision-making, you should inform your employees of your decisions and the reasoning behind them. It may be possible to delegate some of the plan's implementation tasks to others, since they will almost certainly be involved in its implementation.

Delegation of decision-making responsibilities to your staff members takes place at Level 4. In order to advance to the next level, Level 3 employees must have 100% of their results met or exceeded expectations (Level 4). If your employees reach this level too quickly or aren't up to speed, you may find yourself micromanaging them.

It's time to delegate all of your employees' responsibilities. Consistently sound employee decision-making is required before delegating at Level 5, levels of delegation.

When employees make mistakes, it's important to give them the tools they need to learn from their mistakes. Let go of those who aren't up to par, or consider whether or not to continue working with them.

How to Make the Most of Delegation?

Prepare

Before handing over a task to someone else, make sure that you have done all of the necessary planning. Unless the proper preparations have been made in advance, an employee will never be able to achieve great results in the workplace. Build a solid foundation before you begin.

Be Specific About Your Goals

You can't expect your team to succeed if you don't provide them with all the information they require. This information should be included in the brief's content, levels of delegation. Everything should be under the control of a single person.

It is a common blunder of less-than-skilled supervisors and managers to assign tasks to a team. This does nothing to clear up any ambiguity, but instead serves to make it worse. However, a group working on the project should be sure that each task is assigned to an individual member.

Instill confidence in them

Do not make the blunder of assuming that a member of your team knows exactly what you expect of them. In terms of communication, you never know what might slip through the net. Make sure they understand the task before allowing them to begin. You'll save a lot of time in the long run by making this small change now rather than later.

Reaffirmation of their Commitment

Delegation has several steps, and it's easy to skip this one. Don't let anyone go until they've agreed to take on the responsibility. In many cases, despite the team member's initial willingness to accept the responsibility, the project was never completed because they were unable to accept it.

Avoid Reverse Delegation at All Costs

Employees may be able to outperform their bosses when it comes to delegating tasks. When this happens, it can cause stress and exhaustion.

Reverse delegating can have a variety of reasons. Suppose one of your employees is having difficulty with a task or isn't meeting the required standard. As an example, let's say this: In either case, it's up to the manager to get the job done. Using the previous tips, ensure that the employee is capable of starting the task immediately, levels of delegation.

Insist on accountability for all parties involved

Maintain a close eye on the progress of your project. It's fine to intervene if a task is overdue or if you hear that work isn't progressing as it should. Knowing when to get involved and when to stay out of it is critical when it comes to delegation, levels of delegation.

Make sure you're giving your coworkers feedback that they can use to improve themselves. Every manager should do this. A company's employees must know that they're on the right track or they won't be able to reach their goals. Don't forget to help them out if they need it!

To manage your costs and expenses you can use many available online accounting software.

How can Deskera Help You?

Deskera Books is an online accounting, invoicing, and inventory management software that is designed to make your life easy. A one-stop solution, it caters to all your business needs, from creating invoices and tracking expenses to viewing all your financial documents whenever you need them.

An effective control system can help managers delegate authority to employees with confidence.
Deskera Books

Key Takeaways

  • All of us are familiar with the concept of authority. To command others and take action based on your position is, of course, what we mean by authority. As a general rule, the more senior a person is in his or her position, the more powerful they are. Because of the entanglements that exist between job titles and organisational levels, this has happened.
  • Delegation is synonymous with the transfer of authority, as you've no doubt realised by now. The act of transferring authority from one level of authority to another is known as delegation. There are only so many things that the boss can keep track of, levels of delegation. Because no one above him can keep up with the sheer volume of work, he is also better able to organise his workload.
  • Only by combining authority with responsibility can delegation be effective. Authority can be misused if the responsibility it entails is greater than the authority itself. Tasks that are assigned will go unfinished if accountability takes precedence over authority.
  • Always remember that just because power passes from one person to another, it doesn't automatically entail the transfer of responsibility. Bosses are still responsible for their subordinate's work, and this fact is interesting to keep an eye on.
  • The more competent you are, the higher the expectations others have of you. A lot of stress and a lot of work can be caused by the fact that you can't do everything everyone wants. It's possible to feel anxious, depressed, and betrayed as a result.
  • When you assign a project to someone, it's your job as a manager to make sure they have all of these things they need to succeed: training, resources, and authority. An impossible task will frustrate both you and your coworker; your colleague will not be able to achieve the desired outcome, and you will likely have to reschedule that work.
  • The inability to let go of one's own work is a common problem for new bosses and leaders. As a result, they may refuse to accept help from others because of their strong work ethic. Some people are worried that no one else has the necessary abilities, and this is understandable
  • Consider your team members' strengths and weaknesses when deciding on criteria for delegating tasks. Delegating work to members of your team according to their strengths may help them better meet project deadlines. If a task is delegated to an employee who is strong in their area of expertise, they may grow as a result.

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