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What Is Delegation Of Authority?

Sarita, a homemaker, and mother of two, had a great passion for handcrafted décor. Her skills and creativity with macramé décor always awed her family and friends. However, her skills remained sacred to her close circle, not having enough time to do more.

However, during the COVID-19 pandemic and a year-round lockdown when the whole country had to stay home, with low mediums of entertainment, families started to mingle more, spending time in the living room and kitchen together. This gave more housewives like Sarita more time to work on their passion. Soon with her family’s support and encouragement, Sarita started her handcrafted macramé décor business.

At the start, to save money and ensure quality and consistency, Sarita handled everything alone from making a product to packaging, sending out for delivery, taking orders and promoting products online, and making all the business decisions. However, soon she realized, to expand her business and step up from a small business owner to the leader of her company, she should learn the art of delegation of authority and tasks and hand over some of the tasks to her team or collaborate with vendors.

While Sarita is only one example, this story truly depicts the rise of start-ups that brought a wave of hope during the COVID-19 pandemic through the country. As delegating tasks and authority are important to expand the business, it is as much important for the business management.

What is delegation?

Delegation, in simple words, means dividing authority among individuals who report to the leader or manager. In organizations, both huge and small, managers divide their work among their qualified juniors. This involves giving them the responsibility as well as the authority to accomplish their tasks efficiently.

Let’s take the example of Sarita again. As she started expanding her business, she hired Rucha as a manager who, in the absence of Sarita, was responsible for managing production and delivery of orders and handling any issues or customers’ concerns. As Sarita had given her authority to make certain decisions, Rucha could efficiently manage to deal with a fussy client and complete a big order on time.

This shows that delegation of authority empowers people to handle the tasks they are capable of, which gives managers enough time and energy to focus on more important and higher-level managerial tasks.

How to delegate authority

  1. Plan before you delegate

Before starting the delegation formally, think of the tasks you will be delegating, the best-suited team members capable of doing those tasks, also the outcome you want from this delegation.

  1. Discuss before delegation

A good manager or leader involves a team in the process of delegation. Use speaking skills and discuss the tasks you want to delegate with the respective team member without making them overwhelmed due to the new responsibility. Share the outcome you expect from this delegation and make sure you and the person you will be assigning this new responsibility are on the same page about delegating a certain task.

  1. Decide the practical deadlines

Are you training future leaders? Maybe you are training your capable and skilled junior to take the responsibility as a team leader. When it comes to delegating a stretch goal or the tasks that the person hasn’t done before, set the practical and achievable deadline.

Give the new person in the role enough time to understand the responsibilities and tasks at hand. This will make sure you meet the deadline with the expected outcome and quality of work without many hurdles during the delegation process.

  1. Structure the level of authority

What level of authority are you willing to delegate? Recommending ideas or solutions, informing before initiation, or complete authority to act on their own, decide what level of authority you want the person to hold.

Final tip for a successful delegation

So, how would you make this delegation of authority successful? Take into account these three things before you proceed for final delegation.

  • Urgency or importance of the task
  • Risk associated with the task
  • Experience and skills the person holds

Delegating authority and responsibility based on these aspects will help you let go of some of your responsibilities to better manage the work stress and focus more on the business aspects that require your attention and expertise.

If you want to get a deeper understating of delegation of authority, consider learning it from the industry experts by enrolling in online courses where you get to learn from insider’s secrets and experiences of professionals, industry experts, and business leaders.

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