As I gain more experience in my current role, I find myself involving in a lot of different projects and feel like I don't have enough time to finish them all. I want to delegate work to other more junior staffs but am afraid that it would take me even more time and effort. So how do I get started on delegating work? Any tips are appreciated!
Hi Tung, This is always a tough one but if you take a long approach you will benefit as will the more junior staff you're delegating to. You might think of ways to manage the delegated work so it stays on the right track including use of milestones and regular check-ins. You might make these check ins frequent at first, but lengthen as you build confidence that you're getting what you need.
Your concerns are valid. If you are delegating something you don't fully understand yet yourself or are delegating to someone whose abilities may be questionable for the task, it can definitely take more time and effort or it can compromise quality
Thanks a lot Greg and Mitch for the tips!
Thanks for posing this question.
I have been and will be continuing to follow along.
Viewing delegation from the 30,000 foot level, delegation knowledge and skill are essential to achieving goals. Some goal thoughts are offered here: The Power of Goals
Guard against becoming the person who has to do everything. The "only I can do it right" person will never have time to achieve his or her goals. By delegating, you help others grow while freeing up time for your growth.
One thing I try to do is set aside time to walk step-by-step through something I am doing with a younger/newer employee. That way I am not adding much time to what I needed to do anyway, and next time I can delegate that potion of work to them since they are familiar with the process. I find that an initial walk-through helps them know what questions to ask when they get stuck.
Another thing I enjoy doing is writing some of our standards documents for the company that are available to all employees. If we can use those documents to introduce topics and serve as a quick reference, hopefully we can reduce the chances that bad/sloppy habits are formed in the first place. In these types of documents I try to cover the "why" and not just the "what" of the topic. For example, I have a document on drainage design that covers why it is important (ethical, legal, and environmental consequences), some baseline design criteria, and software resources for use in design.
It can also be helpful to find tasks with a longer timeline and give junior employees time to do some trial and error attempts with check-ins. When you can pass off less urgent or less complicated items, you will have more time available for guiding others.
You are absolutely correct. It will be more inefficient at first. Maybe try and pick one day a week where you're allowed to slow down a little bit, and pass off just one task at a time to one or two junior members. It helps if you write down an SOP first (again, this takes more time too). Delegating takes time up front, but hopefully pays off down the line.
Task tracking apps like Asana are very useful. Consider checking it out. You can use it to track your own tasks, and also delegate work to others.
These are great! Thank you Heidi and Christopher!
"I want to delegate work to other more junior staff but am afraid that it would take me even more time and effort."
Once you develop your own "Learning Process Model," time to start, end, and quality of work improve.
a. Sit down, F2F with the assistant, provide them with the description and requirements for the work
they will be doing.
b. Ask them to provide a Work Breakdown Structure for their assignment down to at least Level 3,
and bring it to you the next day.
c. Based on what they did, and were unable to do you will be able to thank them for what they have done and guide them to complete it.
Their time to complete will decrease significantly as you continue with them.
------------------------------William M. Hayden Jr., Ph.D., P.E., CMQ/OE, F.ASCEBuffalo, N.Y."It is never too late to be what you might have been." -- George Eliot 1819 - 1880------------------------------
Thank you Bill!
------------------------------William M. Hayden Jr., Ph.D., P.E., CMQ/OE, F.ASCEBuffalo, N.Y."It is never too late to be what you might have been." -- George Eliot 1819 - 1880Original Message:Sent: 12-17-2020 01:41 AMFrom: Tung NguyenSubject: Tips for effective task delegation?