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A Step By Step Guide To Effective Delegation

What you are doing is not good. You and the people who come to you will only wear yourselves out. The work is too heavy for you; You cannot handle it alone. But, select capable men from all the people – men who fear God, trustworthy men who hate dishonest gain – and appoint them officials over thousands, hundreds, fifties and tens…..That your load will be lighter, because they will share it with you. (Exodus 18:13-22)

In recent posts we have examined all the factors that should be considered leading up to actually delegating a task. In this article we provide a sequential guide on exactly how to delegate in a way that most likely ensures success. You may consider these as steps in a process or techniques you may use in delegation.

How To Delegate Properly

We’ve talked about delegation and its benefits, but exactly how do you go about being an effective delegator and reap the benefits we’ve discussed? Unfortunately, many leaders are unsure how to delegate properly and are therefore hesitant to do so. Here is a step by step process followed by most effective delegators. When followed properly it will help ensure you get the best possible results.

Step 1: Determine the work to be delegated: Read How To Know What Should Be Delegated and How To Know What Shouldn’t Be Delegated

Step 2: Identify the best person for the job: Read How To Know Who To Delegate To

Step 3: Get employee buy-in: After you’ve found the perfect person for the job, you still have to get them to agree take on the new responsibility. Let them know why you chose them for the task and why the task is important. Take their thoughts and experiences into account. Employees who see delegated tasks as opportunities are more likely to be invested in the outcome.

Step 4: Be clear and specific about the work and your expectations: It’s critical to explain to employees why the project is necessary, the goals and outcomes you have for the project, how you will measure success, and what you expect of them. Clarify the boundaries, lines of authority, and what decisions they are empowered to make and what decisions they need to run by you first. Ask them to confirm their understandings with you. If they know what you expect, they’ll be more likely to deliver. And, by setting clear expectations, you help them plan how to carry out the task.

Step 5: Establish controls: Discuss guidelines, timelines and deadlines. Make certain they understand the policies and procedures they must follow. Agree on how you will monitor their work with a schedule of check-points where you will give and receive feedback and review project progress. Agreeing on proper controls help you keep the project on track and accomplished to your satisfaction without the employee feeling they are being micromanaged.

Step 6: Offer training, support, and feedback: Ask the employee if there is any part of the task they feel uncertain how to do. Offer coaching or further training if they express a lack of confidence in how to accomplish the task. Ask what additional resources they will need to be successful. Provide feedback, answers questions, and offer clarification at different check-ins along the way.

Step 7: Show your appreciation: Acknowledge progress, celebrate small wins, and express appreciation during periodic check-ins. Employees will be more effective and dedicated if they know that you notice their efforts.

Step 8: Review final work: When delegated work is delivered back to you, make certain you promptly set aside time to review it thoroughly. Accept only good quality fully completed work. If the results are not satisfactory, explain why to the employee and provide the necessary coaching to complete the task to your satisfaction.

Step 9: Reward the employee. Recognizing and rewarding an employee for a job well done is critical to their willingness to accept future tasks. Determine how the employee likes to be rewarded and determine the appropriate reward. Examples include, a written word of appreciation, recognition before their peers, a gift, promotion, or raise.

The Bottom Line

Now that you know exactly what delegation involves and the steps to delegate work effectively, you are in a position to streamline your tasks and increase your productivity and that of your team. And always keep in mind that leaders must master the art of the delegation process to be successful. Understanding how to allocate responsibility to others is essential in maintaining a high level of productivity, effectiveness and efficiency, both on a personal and organizational level. The bottom line…..delegating tasks is essential for effective leadership!



Posted on June 15, 2021

Jim Baker

Jim is a Church Organizational Leadership and Management Coach, Consultant and Trainer. Throughout his career Jim has demonstrated a passion for showing Pastors and Ministers how to use organizational tools for church and personal growth and health.

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“For I may be absent in body, but I am with you in spirit, rejoicing to see how well ordered you are and the strength of your faith in Christ.” Colossians 2:5