One of the major traps for leaders is the trap of micro-managing. There is a difference between micro-managing and micro-monitoring. Clarifying expectations and the end result at the start of the process, helps to mitigate with micro-management. It is also important to recognize everyone will have a different way to approach tasks, so if certain processes do need to be followed, ensure you specify this at the hand-off.
Another common delegation pitfall is not checking in along the way. These “delegation touch points” or mini-meetings are easy to overlook in today’s world of meeting fatigue. It can be common for the leader to let the person run with it, without check points along the way. Do not assume that everything is ok. Delegation touch points are critical and ideally should be scheduled at the hand-off to build a shared expectation that you are there for support throughout the process
A third delegation pitfall is not developing a common understanding of the end result. During or shortly after the delegation handoff meeting have the person being delegated to re-articulate key milestones, and outcomes. Have them spell out the SMART goals they have set for task completion.
Finally, another very common area of delegation sabotage is assuming that the person delegated to has sufficient authority and responsibility to get the job done. Delegation touch point meetings should cover this pitfall as well.
Through planning, and ongoing communication, tasks you delegate onto team members can be valuable learning and growth experiences. Set up times to check in on progress and identify roadblocks that are emerging. Once the task is completed, review and identify learning and lessons learned. Identify other areas where that team member can continue to use these skills. Take this delegation close out as an opportunity to recognize and celebrate task completion with the team member.
Delegation not only frees up time for leaders, it builds capacity within the team, which is critical in the long-term. What do would you, and the team, benefit from delegating today?
With best wishes,
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