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Delegation - Can You Trust Your Employees?

Delegation is one of the most difficult of tasks for managers to perform, particularly those new to the role of being a manager. A manager who has been given the responsibility for a certain task or project to be completed will often struggle to put their own fate to some extent in the hands of others (their workers) who may not do the task correctly, to a sufficient standard or by a certain deadline. If the project fails, then it will be the manager who gets the flak from either senior management or angry customers (or both!)

However, the reality is that no task of any noteworthy size can be completed by one person alone, and if it can, it is often at the expense of their own health or by sacrificing personal/leisure time. For this reason, it is essential that managers quickly learn to delegate tasks to their employees. Not only do they need to delegate, but they need to delegate properly, which means giving them the resources required to complete the job as well as the authority to make the necessary decisions on their own.

Trust and belief in your employee's ability plays a crucial component in delegation. As stated in the opening paragraph, it is ultimately the manager who will get the blame if a project is not done properly. Whilst they may try and make the excuse that they were let down by others, it is unlikely to carry much weight. But most managers will be involved in the recruitment process of these employees, and if not, then they probably should be! This means that they will have selected them after hand-picking their application from the pile of CVs, and interviewing them to determine if they will be right for the business. After this process, it should be fair to say that the manager believes that the person was capable of doing the tasks that they were hired for, otherwise they would not have given them the job and be paying them in the first place. Therefore, they should be able to be trusted to do their job, and quite often will be better at it than the manager themselves!

Delegation is a skill. Like most skills, it can be taught to a certain extent on a management training course, but will only be truly develop once applied back in the workplace, and the manager becomes accustomed to delegating tasks to his or her employees.

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