Leadership Paradox: Why Delegating Responsibility Is the Key To Success
While it may seem paradoxical, part of being a great leader is knowing when to take a step back.
Most leaders have a strong work ethic, and many believe that staying directly involved in each step of a project fosters the best results. They may have earned their leadership role based on an enthusiastic drive and personal contribution; however, leadership is all about inspiring that same drive in other people.
Choosing the right people for the right projects is crucial for the success of any company. Not only will doing so increase productivity, but it also reduces employee turnover. The more engaged an employee is, the more likely they are to stay with the company.
Part of selecting ideal talent begins with pre-hire testing, when you’ll be able to determine if a candidate is a good fit for your team. Once hired, you’ll feel confident in your employee’s aptitude for success.
Although it may seem daunting at first, following a few key steps will ensure a successful delegation of responsibility.
Clearly Defined Roles and Expectations
Without a clearly defined role, many employees fail to reach their full potential. When assigned a task, they should know exactly what is expected of them — and when. Taking the time to clearly explain what is expected in a given role will prevent further miscommunication down the line. It also increases confidence among staff, as knowing where to begin eases stress and confusion.
The Bigger Picture
While you may have a crystal clear image of how you want a project to turn out, not everyone may share your vision. People need to know exactly why they are doing what they are doing in order to feel inspired. Simply telling an employee what their role is and how to do it isn’t enough; there must be a motivating story behind your idea.
Successfully communicating the bigger picture to your staff gives them the ability to connect the dots along the way.
Trusting The Talent
Once an employee has a comprehensive understanding of a role, he or she needs room to achieve goals independently. While it is pertinent to communicate with staff, micromanaging will not foster productivity or inspire personal growth. A diligent leader will ask for feedback, but won’t stay unnecessarily involved in each and every task. This isn’t only a waste of time, but it doesn’t bode well for workplace morale.
Delegating responsibility effectively takes time and energy, but it is the key to creating an ideal environment for success. Leaders need to be able to assign tasks and projects to employees in order to focus on larger, more strategic moves. In addition, delegating work to peers is an essential part of teamwork, and much more effective than tackling large tasks alone.