Magazine article Success

Pass It On: Learn the Art of Delegation

Magazine article Success

Pass It On: Learn the Art of Delegation

Article excerpt

If you've read even a few of my monthly columns, you're probably familiar with my lesson on busyness versus productivity. Just because you're doing doesn't mean you're accomplishing. It can feel paradoxical. Getting to inbox zero might feel like progress, but not if you're just avoiding larger, more meaningful tasks.

When you become a leader, the paradox shifts slightly. You need to inspire others to accomplish more while being less involved. This is perhaps the most difficult transition for new leaders. The move from doing to delegating is not an easy one. It requires communication, trust and a solid team. Follow the steps below to increase your impact while decreasing your involvement.

1. BUILD THE FOUNDATION.

This the most important step. Just as a house cannot stand on a flimsy foundation, an organization cannot move forward without a strong, reliable team underneath it.

When selecting your team, take time to understand them not as employees, but as people--people with individual strengths, dreams and desires. I see so many leaders place people in positions that don't align with their strengths. When a team member doesn't succeed, the leader wrongly places blame on the employee. It's one thing to stretch the limits of your team's capabilities, but don't set them up for failure.

2. COMMUNICATE CLEARLY.

How can you expect a team to execute your vision if they're only vaguely aware of your dreams? Early on, schedule several sit-downs with every member of your team. …

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