Early in my career, I learned I couldn’t do everything myself—even though I thought I could. Some leaders still try, but it’s always better to learn how to delegate and empower others so you can be more effective.
Think about this phrase, which I had coined in 1986: “The less I do, the more I get done.”
This means if I can delegate to others any activities that don’t require my expertise but do consume my time, then I’m providing the leadership that gets our team to where I want to take it.
Do less to get more done by delegating for results.
Follow these five keys to successful delegation:
- Carefully select the right person (skills, capabilities, and willingness are essential) to complete the task you are delegating.
- Make sure that person understands the relevance of the task. Everybody wants to do important work, so make sure its importance is known. It should not be a meaningless task you couldn’t bother to do yourself.
- Let the person select the deadline for completing the task. If it doesn’t align with your needs, do what you can do to free up time so he or she can finish within your timeframe.
- Follow up regularly. Avoid micromanaging by not saying how to do it but do follow up to see if something is needed to meet the agreed-upon timeframe.
- Appreciate and recognize that person for successfully completing the task.
Do less, get more done – delegate.