Do you feel overloaded and overwhelmed a lot of the time? Like the tasks you must complete is an endless list? The chances are good that you are taking on too much responsibility. This might mean that you are doing too much at work or at home, or feeling that it is up to you to constantly remind others of their responsibilities. Maybe it is more of a feeling that you can’t keep on top of all the things you have to do, and that you are always on the verge of letting other people down. It can be physically and mentally draining to feel so overwhelmed with your tasks.
Have you ever heard the phrase, “If you want something done right, just do it yourself?” This is a popular mindset in some, but it is one of the biggest mistakes a leader can make! It’s tiring trying to complete everything all the time, all by yourself. Being over-responsible can lead to pure exhaustion. No leader can do all things at all times, and delegation is a key tool for boosting team performance and efficiency.
“When you delegate tasks, you create followers. When you delegate authority, you create leaders.” ~Craig Groeschel
When leaders delegate certain tasks to others, they become free to focus on higher-value activities and use their time more productively.. In other words: work smarter, not harder! Delegation not only gives leaders time for strategic thinking, but it also allows them to focus on other tasks that only they can perform— such as leading and coaching their teams. Delegation is a time saver!
Delegation also empowers your employees to demonstrate their capabilities. When you give a trusted employee new work, you’re enabling them to show you their abilities and giving them a chance to take on a new responsibility, which can then make them much more invested in the outcome! Giving some of your tasks to your team fosters a sense of trust and allows for a deeper level of engagement within the workplace.
“Are we limiting our success by not mastering the art of delegation? …. it’s simply a matter of preparation meeting opportunity.” ~Oprah Winfrey
Delegating doesn’t have to remain in the workplace, either. It is an important part of everyday life at home, too. Giving away some of your responsibilities to other household members can help the family work together on tasks and creates some well-spent time together that you may not have had before. For example, teaching your 7-year-old how to properly fold and put away his laundry while you do the rest is a great way to connect to your child, while also delegating some tasks to him. It makes him feel important, and can help him feel more encouraged to help with other tasks that he can take on as well.
Here are some tips to help you Take Back Your Power and begin delegating some of the load you’re carrying:
- Be transparent. Tell your team your thoughts about delegation, and that you need to take some of the load off of your plate. Likely they’ll be understanding, and even more willing to help you.
- Start small. You don’t have to hand over a big chunk of your work all at once. Delegating tasks can seem daunting at first. Building trust with handing responsibilities over can take time.
- Include others with decisions. When you give others a chance to make choices, they’re often more invested in the outcome, and it is a great way to get used to delegating some responsibilities and gauge the decision making skills within your team or household.
- Be patient. Not everyone can get things right the first time, and setting the delegation up as a learning experience can be incredibly helpful and encouraging for others to do better.
- Give constructive feedback. Criticizing will not help the team come together, so approaching things from a point of educating is critical! When someone makes a mistake, guide them— they likely won’t make it again if you’re there to help them understand.
“If you want to do a few small things right, do them yourself. If you want to do great things and make a big impact, learn to delegate.” ~John C. Maxwell
Don’t try to take on the heavy load of doing everything yourself, no one can carry that much for very long without breaking. Once you begin to delegate, your load will get lighter, and you’d be surprised at the efficiency that comes with assigning your tasks to others. It all starts with a little bit of trust!