When it comes to delegating tasks, you need to ask yourself a few important questions that can make the difference between saving or losing time.
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You think about delegating tasks when you have less time and more work, when you can make a larger profit through delegation, or when you need specialized skills that you do not possess. Irrespective of the reason for delegation, you need to first determine whether delegation will give you improved results. You can do this by asking the following questions.
Question 1: What are my expectations from delegation and from my workers?
When you decide to delegate, help yourself to know what you expect to achieve from delegation and exactly how it will improve your work life. For instance, if you are delegating because you wish to spend time in pursuing a more important goal, then calculate how much time you can save from delegation and put into your other goal. It will help you to gain the most from delegation.
After marking your expectations from yourself clearly, determine your expectations from your worker(s) and communicate these to them. It is important to set reasonable and clear expectations from the start so that you can make quick decisions later without any confusion or misunderstanding.
Question 2:Where can I find the right people to delegate the tasks to?
If you do not have many employees working for you already, you may need to hire a worker or two for delegation. As you cannot be sure that the person you hire will be able to give you the expected results, it is always a good idea to not entirely depend upon the new hires, and keep a backup plan ready. You can trust and depend upon the system you have built if it becomes stable over time.
Question 3: How can I get commitment? If I can’t, is there a Plan B?
Often, we make the mistake of sticking with workers who are noncommittal just to save time in hiring somebody else. When delegating, it is very important to make sure that the person to whom you are delegating tasks to provides acceptable results in a reasonable amount of time. Even if the quality of the work is not what you expect, you may still train the person to do better. As far as time is concerned, you can be flexible, but not generous.
Question 4: Do I have the time to train?
If the task or your work schedule does not allow you to train or teach a new worker, then you may need to hire people who already have expertise in the field so that you do not need to train them. You may want to consider your expenses/budget when doing so.
Question 5: Do I have a communication and tracking system in place?
Communicating too much or too little is bad. You may communicate to keep track of projects, depending on their urgency and relevancy. Communicating too much impacts the productivity of workers. It may be seen as interference. It is best to let the worker provide you with an update once a week, daily, or bi-monthly, depending upon the task. If an employee knows when to report, it will make tracking easy for the employer and will build an easy-to-follow routine for the employee.
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