What is ONE thing will you delegate today that you haven’t delegated before, so that you can focus more on the money-generating activities in your business?
When you delegate a task be sure that the person receiving the task is clear on three things: Responsibility, Accountability and Authority.
Here’s how it plays out in the real world. When you assign something to another person be sure you cover:
1. What they are responsible for.
What do they have to complete, do, or accomplish on your behalf?
2. What they will be held accountable for.
How will you know they’ve done the job to completion?
3. The Authority you will allow them in order to accomplish the task.
This often has to do with decision-making authority. If they need to purchase things in order to complete the task for instance, do they need your permission to spend a certain amount?
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Here’s an example:
When I’ve asked my children to help around the house, I’ve gradually increased their chores to move from mere responsibilities: clear the table, set the table, feed the cat, to larger accountabilities such as: “When you wake up tomorrow, please be sure the kitchen is clean when you are done with breakfast.”
Authority then takes it one step further… (now that I have a driver in the house I may say something like) – “If there is no milk, feel free to take this $10 bill and pick up a gallon at the store”.
The Delegation Equation
- When you assign responsibilities to others, discuss the detailed tasks and parameters for completion. (When assigning tasks to experts, often they may know more details than you about how something is done, so you may want that person to explain it to you!)
- When you assign accountabilities, discuss how you will measure success when the task is complete. (This is a great time to discuss your overall expectations, and what a ‘completed’ job looks like in your mind’s eye. You may also discuss how often and to what detail you’d like the person to check in with you on their progress.)
- When you assign authority, discuss the level of decision-making (and often spending) you will assign to another.
Covering off on these three areas will lead you to much better results with your assistants and support staff.
Your Sanity Assignment
What have you delegated lately?
- List the last three tasks you’ve assigned to another person.
- Review the situations, and determine whether you’ve covered off with that person on all three areas.
- If not, go back and be sure your support people are clear on the responsibilities, their accountability, and the authority they have to get the job done right!
What have you learned in delegating to others? What scares you or makes you nervous about delegating? How will this formula above help you? Please share your insights and comments below!