Chances are that you have heard before that great leader’s delegate, right? Well, it is true, always been and will forever be. Be that as it may, the ability and willingness to delegate is hard for many. Generally, people feel as if delegating strips away their power somehow. That is a mindset you must get rid of because like it or not, you need delegation. To delegate is to entrust a task or responsibility to someone else (usually a subordinate). How can you effectively do that? The answers lie in what I am about to share with you now.

VISION

Before you can start delegating you to need to be clear on what the vision is. Essentially what is it that you want to achieve or accomplish? This is the core question. You can go start a journey to nowhere so define the vision first. There are several aspects to interrogate here in defining that vision. For example, when do you want it to be completed? Another issue is why are you even pursuing all this in the first place? You also have to look into when you would want the ball to get rolling. What key performance indicators or milestones will be used in rolling out the whole process? Who will be involved and who will do what and why? These are some of the questions but the overall idea is that you want to clearly define the vision. That is the first important step to take.

RESOURCES

Here you have to put together a comprehensive list of everything you are sure or think will be central to success. You are looking at what will be needed so that those to which roles or tasks are delegated can operate effectively. In this digital world that might mean they will need access to physical and virtual platforms. These can be offices or buildings for example – physical platforms. Then virtually it can be software, databases, accounts, and the like. Financial and material resources might be needed as well. In some cases, training might be necessary before the delegation. I am just highlighting some examples to paint the picture for you. To successfully delegate you will have to put resources together. Thus this constitutes your second step after defining the vision.

TRACKING AND OUTCOMES FRAMEWORK

This refers to devising a framework that will allow two things – ongoing monitoring and evaluation (i.e. tracking) and assessment of outcomes. At the end of the day, you want to be able to easily assess progress and outcomes. So for example you have to define or specify the deliverables. It could be periodic reports, briefings, audits, and the like. This also includes defining timelines i.e. when and what should be availed and to who for the sake of assessing progress and outcomes. Here you can also include standard operating procedures, quality control or assurance frameworks. This would also be where you come up with schedules that would be adhered to. Gantt charts can come in handy here since they help in detailed planning to streamline everything around timelines, responsibilities, and resources.

There are so many upsides of delegating e.g. capacity building, building rapport and trust, and enhancing success. Studies have shown that delegation can significantly boost employee performance because they will feel trusted and valued. Some of the important things when delegating are carefully choosing what to delegate, leveraging on strengths, clearly defining desired outcomes (i.e. the vision), and providing adequate resources. You must also put up smooth communication channels. This will allow for constant and well-balanced feedback mechanisms.

These are just 3 simple steps but if followed to the tee they can sharpen your leadership acumen. I love something that Sandra Day O’Connor once said, “The expert riders of horses let the horse know immediately who is in control, but then guide the horse with loose reins and seldom use the spurs”. That perfectly sums up what delegating is, how it must be done and why it matters. As a leader, in any capacity, learn and master the art of delegating. In 2022 make it a point that you will be a leader that delegates.