I Know Why You Don’t Like to Delegate

Don't like to delegateI already know why you don’t like to delegate!  No doubt about it, delegating well is hard work! Doing it all yourself allows you to adjust on the fly because you have the experience, skills, and authority to make it happen. But, having someone else do it? Sigh…

Delegating done right requires that you:

  • Be clear about your expectations from the start.
  • Fully describe the desired outcome of the project.
  • Set deadlines for progressive drafts and final product.
  • Provide the tools and resources necessary to meet the objectives of the project.
  • Outline the decision-making authority that the team member has with regard to the project.
  • Describe communication guidelines so that your team member knows what you consider to be need to know, nice to know, and don’t bother me with that (and don’t forget to mention how often you want to receive said information).
  • Schedule a results review after the completion of the project so that you can offer valuable feedback.

Whew! When you’re working crazy long hours and doing your best just to keep up, the prospect of thinking through these details make slamming your hand in your car door seem more pleasant.

Sure, the mental gymnastics involved in delegating well are intimidating, but like any other skill set, delegating gets easier with practice.

In fact, if you’ve got the right team working alongside you, not only are you getting better but so are they! You’ll begin to forge a working relationship that allows your team to anticipate your needs, honor your preferences, and get the job done in a magical sort of way.

And lest you think the relationship (and resulting magic) are unimportant, let me share from personal experience. Peggy and I have worked together for a little over a year now, and not only is she an amazing virtual assistant, but she now knows that when I’m pressed for time, I’m more likely to leave out a detail or two. Peggy has a way of helping me slow down and asking just the right questions to make sure she has what she needs to get the job done right. Presto! She’s done it again…

I’ll be expanding on the list above over the next several weeks. Don’t be afraid to look for ways to improve the process! Unfortunately, too many continue to delegate poorly, blame the team, and ignore any opportunities for growth.

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