Learn to delegate more effectively

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in Leaders & Managers,People Management

It can be hard to give up control of a project and trust that your team members will get the work done and do a great job. But you can’t do it all, and if you try, you probably won’t do very well and will likely alienate your people in the process.

Business owner Vanessa Merit Norn­­­berg observed that the best man­agers she’s seen were those who allowed staff members to:

  • Think boldly
  • Move swiftly
  • And to do so with a game plan rather than a rule book.

Here’s her advice for how to ­emulate them:

Plan to connect on a regular basis. Delegating doesn’t mean taking a totally hands-off approach.

You’re still accountable for the results, so you want to check in along the way.

Set up regular meetings where your team members can fill you in on their progress as part of a conversation, not an inquisition.

Ask plenty of questions. While you never want to seem like you’re interrogating your team members, asking a lot of questions can help you assess how they are doing.

The answers you receive can set the stage for a discussion, which is a much better way to guide your team’s actions than by simply telling them how you would like them to do things.

Be readily available. Even the most autonomous employees need a support system, so make sure your people know they can come to you anytime with questions or get help evaluating an idea. If you set up a team atmosphere, asking for help will feel like col­laborating instead of a sign of weakness.

Admit when you mess up. No one is perfect, so you will make mistakes, and when you do, admit it to your team.

Seeing your honesty and that the world doesn’t end with an error will help your team members gain the confidence they need to take charge of the projects you’ve trusted them to handle.

— Adapted from “4 Traits of Incredibly Effective Delegators,” Vanessa Merit Nornberg, Inc.com.

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