Delegating Made Easy

Shot of a young woman taking a break during a demanding day at work

Letting go is hard. But once you learn how, your career will reap the benefits.

It’s a natural tendency to want to do everything ourselves. However, in the workplace (and in other aspects of life as well), we need to trust and rely on others to ensure the best possible outcomes. This means letting go and learning how to delegate. Here are five steps to effective delegation.

Recognize that delegating will help you grow. Delegation is freeing. Asking someone to do a task frees you 
up to use your talents wisely and to focus on more challenging and strategic roles.

Trust your coworkers. By meaningfully involving other people in a project, you develop their skills and abilities. The next time you need their help, you can be confident they can do it well, with less supervision—and you can build better relationships in the process.

The up-front effort is worth it. In order to delegate, you will have to gather information and thoroughly explain the task at hand. Ask for regular progress reports and give people the space to establish their own process, so you can focus instead on the results.

Clearly articulate the desired outcome. Make sure to identify any potential barriers and advise how to overcome them. Give people information about whom they need to talk to or work with to reach the end goal.

Give positive feedback. When the task is completed well, make sure to reward the people who assisted you. People want recognition, and it will increase their respect for you and their desire to accomplish more challenging tasks in the future.

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