A New Manager's Guide to Delegation

There are good reasons why every manager needs to delegate tasks 'we'll come to these in a moment' but for a manager the ability to delegate can be essential. If you're stepping into a role that hasn't been filled for weeks or possibly months, the chances are that you'll be greeted with a backlog of tasks of varying complexity and importance. The simple truth is that, as a new manager, you simply cannot do everything.


Your first step is to prioritise outstanding tasks in order of importance. Your second is to delegate those tasks which are of lesser importance and which can be completed competently by members of your team. As a new manager, the urge to impress by tackling every task that you've inherited can result in you becoming overwhelmed, particularly when fresh work begins to arrive. Delegating tasks gives you the time to focus upon the most important items and gives a greater feeling of control.


Why every manager should delegate tasks

There are several aspects to the art of delegation, and those who attend our comprehensive business skills training course on the subject will learn how and when to delegate appropriately and effectively. Both managers and their teams can benefit from effective delegation. Besides lightening the manager's load and allowing them to concentrate upon high priority work, delegating tasks is a means of providing developmental opportunities for team members and can help the manager to assess individual strengths and weaknesses. Empowering team members by delegating tasks to them can also be motivational, as it demonstrates your trust in their ability handle such tasks.


Used responsibly and appropriately, the art of delegation is a valuable leadership skill, but should never be used to 'dump' tasks that have been neglected, as a form of punishment or simply because the manager cannot be bothered to address them.


Delegating tasks - a quick 'how-to'

The key to successful delegation is to assign a task in accordance with the recipient's ability to carry it out. A manager needs to be confident that the person to whom the task is assigned has the capacity, competencies and motivation to complete the work in a timely and satisfactory manner.


Once an appropriate candidate has been identified the manager should explain to them what the task is and why it is being assigned to them. Instructions for completing the task should be clear and unambiguous, and the recipient should have access to all of the resources they require in order to complete the task.


The recipient should be made aware of the way in which their performance of the task will be measured and they should be given a realistic timescale and deadline by which the task must be completed.

As we've seen, effective delegation is a leadership skill that can benefit both managers and employees. Practical management training is the best way in which to acquire practical delegation strategies, and for business managers or leaders who prefer the convenience of on-line study, Maguire Training is pleased to offer a range of courses related to the art of delegation via their innovative and cost-effective E-learning platform.

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