8 Tips on How to Improve Delegation Skills

Delegation is a key skill for any leader or manager. But it’s not always easy to get right.

In this post, we’ll share 8 tips on how to improve your delegation skills. By following these tips, you’ll be able to delegate more effectively and get better results from your team.

Define the task

Defining the task is one of the most important aspects of delegation. Without a clear understanding of what needs to be done, it will be difficult to delegate effectively. Here are some tips on how to define the task:

  1. Be clear and concise in your description of the task.
  2. Make sure that the person you are delegating to understands the task and has the necessary skills to complete it.
  3. Set a deadline for the completion of the task.
  4. Communicate any expectations you have for the task.
  5. Be available to answer any questions the person you are delegating to may have.
  6. Follow up after the task is completed to ensure that it was done to your satisfaction.
  7. Give feedback on the person’s performance.
  8. Thank the person for their efforts.

Set a deadline

Setting a deadline is one of the most important aspects of delegation. If you don’t set a deadline, then the task will likely never get done. When you’re delegating a task, make sure to set a clear and concise deadline. The person you’re delegating to should have no trouble understanding when the task needs to be completed.

One of the worst things you can do when delegating is to set an unrealistic deadline. If you do this, then you’re just setting yourself up for failure. Make sure that the deadline you set is achievable and realistic. If you’re not sure if the deadline is realistic, ask someone who is familiar with the task.

If you need to, break the task down into smaller deadlines. This will help to keep the person on track and ensure that the task gets done in a timely manner.

It’s also important to be flexible with deadlines. Things come up and sometimes the person you delegated to can’t meet the deadline you set. If this happens, be willing to adjust the deadline.

In summary, setting a deadline is essential to delegation. Make sure that the deadline is realistic, achievable, and flexible.

Find the right person

Delegation is a critical skill for any leader, manager, or supervisor. Finding the right person to delegate a task to is essential to ensuring that the task is completed effectively and efficiently.

Give clear instructions

When delegating a task, it is important to give clear instructions so that the person you are delegating to knows exactly what is expected of them. Here are some tips on how to give clear instructions:

1. Be clear about what you want the person to do.

Don’t just say, “Can you do this for me?” Be specific about what you need the person to do. For example, “I need you to research the best way to ship this package” or “I need you to write a report on the sales figures for the past quarter”.

2. Give an overview of the task.

Before getting into the specifics of the task, give the person an overview of what it is they will be doing. This will help them to understand the big picture and how their task fits into it.

3. Outline the steps involved.

Once you’ve given an overview of the task, outline the steps involved so that the person knows what they need to do in order to complete it. Be as specific as possible.

4. Provide any relevant information.

Make sure to provide the person with any relevant information they will need in order to complete the task. This may include files, links, contact information, etc.

5. Set a deadline.

Be sure to set a deadline for the task so that the person knows how much time they have to complete it.

6. Let the person know who to contact if they have any questions.

If the person has any questions, be sure to let them know who they can contact for answers. This may be you or someone else on your team.

7. Thank the person in advance.

Thank the person in advance for their help in completing the task. This shows appreciation and will help to motivate them.

8. Follow up after the task is completed.

Once the task is completed, be sure to follow up with the person to see how they found the experience and to answer any questions they may have.

Follow up

Delegating is only half the battle – the other half is following up. Follow-up is key to ensuring that tasks are completed properly and efficiently. Here are a few tips on how to follow up effectively:

1. Schedule regular check-ins

Check-in with the person you delegated the task to on a regular basis. This could be daily, weekly, or even monthly, depending on the task. The important thing is to stay in communication and make sure that the task is still on track.

2. Set deadlines

Make sure to set deadlines for tasks that you delegate. This will help to keep the person accountable and ensure that the task is completed in a timely manner.

3. Be clear and concise

When communicating with the person you delegated the task to, be clear and concise. This will help to avoid any confusion and ensure that the person understands what is expected of them.

4. Give feedback

Give feedback on the task that was completed. This will help the person to understand what they did well and what they could improve on for next time.

5. Be available

If the person you delegated the task to has any questions, make sure you are available to answer them. This will help to ensure that the task is completed properly and avoid any misunderstandings.

By following these tips, you can ensure that tasks are completed effectively and efficiently.

Let go

One of the most important aspects of delegation is learning to let go. This can be difficult for many people, especially those who are used to being in control. It is important to remember that when you delegate a task, you are not giving up control, you are simply delegating the responsibility for completing the task. This means that you need to trust the person you are delegating to and have confidence in their ability to complete the task.

Learning to delegate can be a challenge, but it is an important skill to master. By following these tips, you can learn to delegate effectively and improve your delegation skills.

Be available

Be available to answer questions and give feedback. When you’re delegating a task, make sure you’re available to answer any questions or give feedback as needed. This doesn’t mean you need to be available 24/7, but you should check in regularly to see how things are going and offer help when needed.

If you’re not available, your team will likely struggle to complete the task at hand, which can lead to frustration and resentment. Make yourself available as much as possible to help your team succeed.

Give feedback

Giving feedback is an important part of the delegation. It helps the person you delegate to know what they are doing well and what they can improve on.

When giving feedback, make sure to be clear, concise, and specific. Avoid general comments, or making assumptions about someone’s understanding.

The following tips will help you give feedback effectively:

1. Make a point to give feedback regularly

Giving feedback is not a one-time event. It should be an ongoing part of your interactions with the person you delegate to. Make a point to give feedback regularly, and you will find that it becomes easier and more effective over time.

2. Avoid giving criticism that is vague

It is important to be specific when giving feedback. This way, the person you are delegating to can understand your expectations and take action to improve. Avoid giving criticism that is vague, such as “you need to be more organized.”

3. Critique the behavior, not the person

When critiquing someone’s behavior, it is important to maintain a constructive perspective. For example, rather than saying “you’re lazy,” try “I noticed that you didn’t take the initiative to work on that project.” This will help the person you are delegating to feel as though you are critiquing their behavior, not them as a person.

4. Use “I” statements

When giving feedback, use “I” statements. For example, “I noticed that you didn’t take the initiative to work on that project.” This will help the person you are delegating to feel as though you are giving them your honest opinion, rather than making a judgment about them.

5. Avoid using “you” statements

When giving feedback, avoid using “you” statements. For example, rather than saying “You didn’t do the job right,” try “I was expecting the job to be done differently.” This will help the person you are delegating to feel as though you are giving them your honest opinion, rather than making a judgment about them.

6. Be aware of your tone

Your tone of voice can be just as important as the words you use when giving feedback. Avoid sounding judgmental, condescending, or angry. Instead, try to sound supportive and positive.

7. Avoid giving feedback when you’re emotional

If you’re feeling emotional, it’s best to avoid giving feedback. Wait until you’ve calmed down, and then give your feedback.


About the Author
James has over 20 years of experience as a leader and entrepreneur. As a founder, he led startup teams as well as million-dollar companies. He has recently turned to leadership coaching and writing to pass his knowledge to the next generation. If you have any questions or comments regarding the content of this post, please send us a message via the contact page.

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