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Common Delegation Mistakes Every Leader Should Avoid

As leaders, business owners have to be utterly dedicated to their companies in order to ensure success. Understandably, many of them tend to have exacting standards—and this often leads to them doing most of the work rather than relying on others.

If not you, then who?

If this resonates with you, then you should realize that refusing to delegate does not boost your company's productivity—it’s quite the opposite! The point of delegation is for you to focus on higher-value activities while empowering your team to hone their strengths and grow their skills. Proper delegation makes it possible for you to scale your business.

Now, task delegation is a skill just like any other. It’s not as easy as hiring people left and right, and not all leaders can do it effectively. Some end up micromanaging, which defeats the purpose! Yes, you delegated a task, but what’s the point if you’re going to hover over your team member’s shoulders as they attempt to tick off every item on their to-do list? But of course, don’t take it to the extreme by fully relinquishing control. Supervise and monitor the progress of each assignment every once in a while to reinforce accountability.

It's all about balance.

Of course, to be able to trust your team members to complete tasks independently, you need to equip them with the right guidance and training from the start. This way, you don’t have to keep correcting them. Some leaders fail to provide precise and sufficient instructions when delegating tasks, which essentially sets your employees up for failure. Always confirm if they understood the requirements and keep your door open in case they need additional information or have any clarifications.

Excellent communication is the cornerstone of effective delegation.

And whenever a task is completed, don’t forget to check that all the i’s are dotted and all the t’s are crossed. If something is lacking or off, tell your team member what you expected and how they can do better. And if your team did a good job, let them know! The absence of feedback can make your staff feel ignored, leading to apathy and demotivation.

I'd change this, and that, oh and remove this—

Another common pitfall to watch out for is delegating tasks to the wrong team member. Not only does it cause the quality of work to suffer, but it may also sow discord among your roster. As much as possible, you should set up your team members to succeed—because that ultimately helps your business. The solution here is to have a deep understanding of your staff’s strengths, weaknesses, and areas of expertise, so you can give the assignment to those who are best qualified.

You better make the right choice.

Lastly, offloading too many responsibilities onto your team can lead to missed deadlines and even erode their enthusiasm for work. Remember that your staff members can get burnt out, too. Make sure your expectations are realistic and achievable.

There is such a thing as "too much."

Now that you know what to avoid when delegating, it's time to put all of this knowledge to good use! Let TopVA help you with administrative support, copywriting, graphic design, or website creation. Contact us today to get started!

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