Be a Great Delegator

Delegation is the key trait of a leader and most leaders (at least 2/3) struggle with doing this right. If you have delegated a task well you will get back exactly what you expect, when you expect it. If you don't experience this often then this will be a good read for you.

A key part of Calm Leadership is delegating in a way where others understand what you expect of them and get the job done.

Here is how you master delegation every time:

Write it down!

Most don't even do this. They throw something at a coworker expecting them to keep all the balls in the air. And what is even worse you need a ton of interruptions or status update meetings to know where things are headed. Often more urgent things comes up and the delegated tasks fades out and is slowly forgotten...

So step one is writing it down in a shared system like Workjoy so you both can check in on the task on your own time without interrupting each other.

Set clear expectations

What are your expectations? Is this just a fast quick-and-dirty task or does this need to be your colleagues best work?

We praise writing as a superpower and you should absolutely use all those principles to clearly describe any non-trivial task. If you are not willing to do a good description just don't delegate it at all.

A great description outlines what the finished product should look like. Can you provide examples of similar work or templates then do that.

A well described tasks can take you 10-30 minutes but save you days of lost time if it is misunderstood.

Avoid confusion with clear ownership

Be clear on who owns this task. Only one person can own a task, more people just leads to "I thought you did it" problems. If you need more people on something then give one person the overall responsibility and divide the work in to clear individual sub-asks or sub-goals.

Get it done on time

Have a clear deadline and let your team continuously update you on when they expect the task to be done so you know if the timeline is slipping.

Always get looped in for feedback

If your team has questions during the task you should be available to quickly get back to them with clarification. That is why we have integrated chat into everything in Workjoy so your conversations don't get separated from the work.

But most importantly before the task is done you should be looped in for approval. It is the best time for feedback rather than after the team thinks they are done.