Effectiveness Tip of the Week
The Delicacies of Delegation
Parents, managers, and people in general have trouble letting go, and when they do, it's gofer mania! "Hey, you! Go for this and go for that." It's pretty hard to supervise even one person when you are involved in every move he/she makes. Effective delegation focuses on results, not methods, and allows others to use their imagination, free will, and conscience to get the job done. Here's some advice:
- Desired Results. Clearly articulate what needs to be done, not how to do it. Describe in detail the desired result so that the other person virtually sees it.
- Guidelines. Make sure there are parameters within which people are to operate. Point out potential failure paths -- what not to do versus what to do.
- Resources. Help people understand what human, financial, technical, or organizational resources are available to them.
- Accountability. Set up standards of performance that will be used in evaluating results and when those evaluations will occur.
- Consequences. Specify what will happen, both good and bad, as a result of the evaluation.