Why Is Delegation So Difficult?

Why Is Delegation So Difficult?

Eli Broad is quoted as saying “The inability to delegate is one of the biggest problems I see with managers at all levels.” I see that as well.  There are two major reasons why managers avoid delegation: they don’t want to lose control and they believe no one can do the task as well as they can.  Do you relate to either of these? I recently had a phone conversation with a client who had both of these issues. He runs a printing and mailing operation that is in a lot of chaos. We were discussing how he delegates to his employees and he shared this recent example. “The two people in the production area decided to organize the inventory. We needed this to be done, he said, but they weren’t doing it the way I thought they should. I was on them every day to do it better; to do it my way, not their way. They were slow; they didn’t have a process to follow, and in fact, it seemed like they didn’t know what they were doing.” I asked him how they reacted to his input and he said it built resistance in them. I shared with him the steps to delegate properly, have an agreed upon deadline, have an agreed upon reporting system on progress, and have agreed upon results. When I asked if he had used this process – well, you know the answer, right? No, he didn’t, which left his employees feeling micromanaged and belittled. I suggested he put aside his belief that no one could do it as well as he could...
Guidelines For Effective Delegation

Guidelines For Effective Delegation

Contrary to popular belief, delegation is not “dumping” work on other people.  Make it a part of your management system for getting work done through other people by creating an environment in which they want to do the work and are able to do the work. There are four steps in the delegating process: 1. Identify the work or result you want to delegate and determine to whom you’ll delegate it. You can delegate almost anything, with the following exceptions: You can’t delegate the overall result of your position (unless you’re leaving your position). You can’t delegate the work or results of someone else’s position (unless you have their agreement). You can’t delegate work or results that have been delegated to you and that you’ve agreed to do yourself. When it’s time to delegate, determine which position is appropriate for the task. Not the appropriate person, the appropriate position. Many business owners and managers have a tendency to delegate everything to the same persons, over and over. They are the ones who have come through for you before. What’s the remedy? Pay attention to your own habits. Notice if you’re stuck in a comfort zone of habitually delegating to the same people. Invest managerial time in creating systems and training people how to run them. Force yourself to trust people to do their jobs. 2.  Put the delegation in writing, with the due date. Once you know what you’re going to delegate and have identified the right position and person, you need to write the delegation down with as much specificity as possible. When you put something in writing:...