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Delegate effectively

Working efficiently by delegating

Chatting to a company director recently, he pointed out that many of his colleagues have no idea how to delegate to their PAs or other executives.

When I first had my own assistant, I was rather at a loss initially as I had never been advised of the best ways to delegate.

So here are a few points which may help :

  • Choose the best person for the task, not necessarily the most willing;
  • Ensure relevant training;
  • Don’t apologise for delegating, unless it is a really onerous task;
  • Say “please” and “thank you”;
  • Make sure the person knows the deadline;
  • Be aware of risks and build in controls;
  • Give enough notice;
  • Outline the objective of the task;
  • Sometimes explain only the objective rather than the method; people have different working styles;
  • It may be more appropriate to delegate authority rather than individual tasks; this will enable a person to organise their own workload;
  • Encourage questions;
  • Give constructive feedback;
  • Provide support, but don’t “hover”;
  • Be assertive.