Time Management through delegation of work

It’s virtually impossible to do everything as a boss on your own in the modern workplace. And if you ever decide to do that, you will be left gasping at the end of it. Delegation is an effective tool towards time management. The Head or Team Leader can easily delegate less important, unimportant and inconsequential tasks to subordinates/juniors and concentrate on those that require the leader’s immediate attention.

Delegation helps the boss to balance his workload in a better manner, gaining time to focus on important projects, as well as some time to relax. Once people learn to accomplish a given task in an efficient manner, they can take responsibility for the same.

Ones subordinates/juniors may have skill sets are well suited for particular tasks. This will save time and the feeling of additional responsibility might boost their job satisfaction level. The Head of the group definitely needs time to plan, think and improve the efficiency of what he is doing. Delegation helps him do this and a lot more.

Firstly, decide on what are the tasks/projects to be delegated to members of the team or subordinates. The department or group should have skilled people to do the tasks for the boss. It’s easier if these tasks are low yielding ones, and don’t involve major managerial or operational decisions.

Select capable people for delegating tasks, with their talents ranging from ‘Fair’ to ‘Better’. The extent of delegation solely depends on the ability, experience and reliability of assistants. Competent people can manage well without intervention/supervision from while inexperienced ones need constant watching. Proper coaching, encouragement and practice might improve their standards. Once work is delegated to the right kind of people the boss can save a lot of time, in addition to accomplishing the tasks in much quicker time.

Always complete tasks must be delegated instead of doing it in parts. It’s easier and less time-consuming to keep tabs on totally delegated task. Even solutions will be better and well integrated.

While delegating explain the task in totality, and the results wanted from the assistant. Also explain the importance of the job, its constraints, deadlines for completion and reporting dates/time when you want to know about the progress.

Monitor the efforts of assistants/ juniors at an early stage so that the progress is in line with specified time frame. A spreadsheet is a good way to tack multiple projects at the same time. It also eliminates the need to micromanage the team, and thereby saving time.

The Team leader must accept only finished work: The purpose of delegation is to lighten his workload. If accepted partially completed jobs, the boss may have to rework on them if required. This will take up a lot of time, and also hinder the progress of the boss as well as his assistants.

The Head of the Team should be clearly able to define the tasks that are to be delegated. SMART tasks i.e. work which is specific measurable, achievable, realistic and time bound is good for delegation. If something vague is delegated, the results are bound to be inconsistent too. Always recognize the efforts of your assistants and share credit with them.

There may also be some draw backs in the delegation process. Many managers find it difficult to delegate work. They feel that it reflects a lack of ability or have problems trusting others to do the job properly. Some even feel guilty about delegating as they feel that others being overworked.

Many managers feel that by delegating they will let matters slip out of their control. Whatever may be the reason, the boss must always keep in mind that his objective is to manage time well, and delegation is an important part of it. Delegation can be the ultimate tool for time management provided a manager or Head or Team Leader must know how to use it properly.