DELEGATION

Delegation is the process of granting the authority and responsiblity for performing a task to another individual. Delegated tasks can motivate members, spread the work load and train future officers. Delegation is a must for effective leadership and is one of the single most important skills a leader can develop.

WHY DON'T YOU DELEGATE?

1) NOBODY DOES IT BETTER - You lack confidence in another's ability to perform the task. You think it's easier to do it by yourself.

2) INSECURITY - You believe you will lose "control" and won't know what is happenning.

3) TAKES TIME TO TRAIN OTHER PEOPLE - You don't believe you have the time to properly organize and train someone and fear they lack the ability to make decisions which could reflect on you.

4) HABIT - You ahve always done a task yourself or take pleasure in the task and have, therefore, never thought to delegate it.

WHY MEMBERS WILL NOT ACCEPT DELEGATED TASKS

1) They believe they are not adequately trained and thereforee, lack self-confidence.

2) They fear failure and/or criticism for mistakes.

3) They lack resources and information to accomplish a task.

4) The rewards or incentives are inadequate to motivate them to perform the task.

5) It is too easy for them to ask you to make decisions, or they are unsure how much authority they have to make decisions.

WHY SHOULD YOU DELEGATE

1) Increases the number of tasks which can be accomplished in a set period of time.

2) Delegation can free you from performing routing taks, therefore, allowing you more time to work on the overall organizational goal.

3) Allows you to increase your management experience by learning to assign, coordinate and administrate tasks.

4) Delegating tasks builds a team of strong, informed members who stay excited about your goals and will work with you to reach them. Delegation keeps member actively involved.

5) In delegateing, you are sharing your knowledge with far more people than jsut one individual. The person you delegate to train may in turn teach another member and so on. Being involved in student organization activities is a learning experience for everyone. If you already know how, it's your responsibility to teach someone else.

6) Helps you avoid "burnout"

7) "Stand on the Shoulders of the Giants" -- When you are surrounded by well-trained, active motivated membersm, you and your organizationcan achieve more than when one or two people are pulling the load themselves.

WHEN NOT TO DELEGATE

1) Situations when you have to change someone's behaviour or that involves another's morale.

2) Confidential matters

3) Someting you would not be willing to do yourself.

4) The "Hot Potato." Do not delegate potentially controversial tasks or something "hot" that you don't want to deal with.

HOW CAN YOU DELEGATE EFFECTIVELY?

1) Select the task you wish to delegate.

Delegated tasks may range from simple routine, such as putting up fliers, to more complex tasks, such as planning a fundraiser. Almost any task can be delegated to another individual.

2) Select the individual to whom you wish to delegate the task.

Keep in mind the needs, interests, and wants of the individual. If possible, select those individuatls whose intersts match the requirements for the job or task. Ask for volunteers, but don't be hesitant about assigning tasks.

3) Share the wealth

Don't give the same job to the same person every time. Also, vary the tasks delegated in terms of who gets the "good" tasks and who gets the less desireable ones. Don't always give the choice tasks to the same person.

4) Set up specific performance expectations and goals.

Work with the prson who is going to perform the task to outline expectations. This includes what needs to be accomplished, how and when the task must be completed.

5) Make resources available

Be sure that materials, information, training, etc. is available to the person performing the task. The person shold also be given the authority necessary to perform the task.

6) Communicate

Keep the lines of communication open. Check on the person performing the task. Don't take over. Give advice and feedback. If necessary, re-evaluate the performance goals and set new ones. Be supportive.

7) Evaluate

Evaluate the task after it has been performed. Thank the person who performed the task and make suggestions for any changes you believe would be beneficial.

Effective delegation is a complex process of communication and evaluation but once mastered can allow your organization to achieve far mor than one person can do alone. The development and maintenance of active, well-trained members is a difficult but obviously rewarding task for any leader. Good luck!

For more information on organization and personal development skills or University policies regarding organizations, stop by or call the Leadership Activities Office, Student Center, University of the Incarnate Word, 829-6034.