Planning to Delegate Tasks? 5 Questions You Must Ask Yourself
Delegation of tasks is one of the fundamental ideas of management leadership. It involves the assignment of any task or authoritative power to a subordinate. Once the responsibility has been delegated, it is the duty of the subordinate to carry out all the detailed activities surrounding the task. Needless to say, the process involves a lot of accountability for both parties involved – the manager delegating the task and the subordinate who is responsible for any outcome of the delegated task. Here are 5 crucial questions every manager must ask themselves before delegating a responsibility –
Q1. Is the employee capable enough to handle the assignment?
A clear analysis of the skill set needed to complete the task must be made. Based on this analysis, the best person for the job needs to be selected. Since most delegation processes involve some amount of financial risk, making sure that the most qualified person gets the job is very important.
Q2. What are the duties of the manager before delegating the task?
Once the selection process is over, it is the duty of the manager to make sure that the subordinate has access to all the necessary knowledge needed to complete the task. If there is training or briefing needed, it is the manager’s duty to give it to his or her employee.
Although an experienced employee may already know how to accomplish a task, training workers and being precise about all the expectations from the task helps in saving time and resources in the long run.
Q3. Does the employee have access to all the tools needed to accomplish the task?
Delegating a task that involves digging to a person without a shovel is bound to end up in failure! It is quite simple to predict what can happen when subordinates are allowed to overestimate their own abilities. Delegating a task to a member of staff without giving that person the tools and insight essential for the accomplishment of the task can bring about a tragedy for the manager, the company and negatively affect the employee/s involved.
Q4. What is the deadline?
The deadline that comes with the assignment of the task is a crucial aspect of delegation processes. Not only is the completion of the task itself at stake, the reputation of the worker handling the task is also tested when a strict deadline is involved. Some managerial tricks of setting a deadline include –
- Including the date and time of delivery. That way there is no confusion regarding the set deadline.
- Setting a deadline time that precedes the actual deadline. For instance, if a task is due on Tuesday, telling the employee to send it by Monday is usually a great idea.
Q5. Can the employee accomplish the task by the established deadline?
One cannot expect a worker to complete the task if he or she is not comfortable with the deadline!
The most important aspect of delegation is communication. Maintain that after asking yourself these 5 crucial questions and you’re all set!
Delegation can indeed lead to great results when proper accountability on the part of the manager and the subordinate is maintained. Before delegating, the manager must consider important aspects like his own duty regarding the delegation, the deadline, the capability of the concerned employee and whether the employee has adequate access to the required tools.