How to Have More Work Time in Your Day

One way to manage your time more effectively is to delegate work to others on your staff or to contract workers you hire for specific projects. Often I hear such comments as, “It takes too much time to delegate.” “If I delegate the work there is no guarantee that the work will be done properly.  It is just easier to do it myself.” “No one can do this as well as I can.”   If others who have a lower hourly rate can do the work while you focus on the work only you can do, your cash flow will be better because you can do more of the work that only you can do.

I have firsthand experience with delegating currently since I have an aide working for me caring for my mother during the day so I can tend to my coaching business.  I have had all the above thoughts at different times.  I frequently feel that my way is the only way.  I learn over and over that I am wrong.  Frequently an aide will find an even better way to do something.  While it is time consuming to explain what to do, write it all down for the person to refer to and verify that it has been done well, it is satisfying when everything works well, and my mother is well cared for.  Then I can get my work done uninterrupted.

Here are some tips on how to delegate that I have learned over the years.

  1. Be specific about what you want done. Be clear as to the purpose of the delegated work and what kind of results you expect.  Take the time to answer the person’s questions.  This takes less time than redoing work. For complex tasks leave a written document to be left with the person doing the task that reviews the steps to be done.
  2. Set a realistic deadline for the delegated work and make sure that this is workable for the person to whom you are delegating the work.
  3. Give the person the information they will need and point them toward other resources they may use to complete the work.
  4. Be available for questions at specific times and require periodic progress reports. 
  5. If you are delegating because you have so much to do that you do not have time to give explicit instructions, be sure to delegate to a member of your team or a contract worker who can do the work with a minimum of direction. Perhaps they have done this job before or they have had experience with similar projects.
  6. Once you delegate to someone who is well equipped to handle the task, allow the person space to be imaginative in their approach and to take the initiative to do something differently or do it in a bigger way (as long as you get the results you are looking for!)
  7. If you want to use the delegation of the task (problem) as a way to develop a member of your staff or a contract worker, leave time in your schedule to provide enough detail as to how to go about getting the task done as is necessary for that particular person. (Developing a team member means eventually you will not have to give as much direction.)
  8. Have a system to report back to you so that you get feedback without being constantly interrupted during your day. Have a list of critical dates so that you get the feedback regularly.
  9. Keep a log of all the projects you delegate and their status.  Update the log as you get feedback.
  10. Give credit and praise for the successful completion of the task or solution of the problem.  Don’t forget to acknowledge yourself!

How Can Coaching Help You?
Are you in a leadership role?  Do you have difficulty doing the strategic, visionary work that leaders must do because you have too much work to do?  Delegating may be your answer.  If you would like help making time for the important visionary work that only you can do, I’d love to help you. Call me at 781-598-0388 or email me at asparker@asparker.com.

Share

Comments are closed.