Do you think your office couldn’t get by without you? Sorry–wrong answer. Delegation isn’t dumping work on others–it’s sharing power and responsibility by assigning others significant tasks along with the authority to achieve them. Don’t whip yourself into exhaustion: Polish your delegating skills and make your entire team stronger.Keep a record for a week of how often you delegate tasks. A low number suggests you should make a conscious effort to delegate more and might indicate that you have difficulty relinquishing control or that you don’t trust your people to do a good job. Suppose you come down with a serious illness and cannot come to work–then what? Are your people trained to make the operation fly without you? A good boss sets everyone up for success.
Identify tasks to delegate. Define them clearly in your own mind before assigning to others. Map out a flowchart to make sure you’ve covered the bases (see 9 Organize Your Thoughts).
Match subordinates’ skills to tasks and make assignments. Explain precisely why you made the assignment choices, always incorporating an element of praise, such as "You’re good at details" or "You’re tactful with difficult clients."
Clarify the nature of the tasks and the expected results. Spending more time on expectations up front will save frustration later. Set clear deadlines for completion so you don’t need to constantly ask, "Is it done?" Ask for a report at key stages.