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      8 Things To Avoid When Delegating

      We learn best from our failures.  When you touch a hot stove, you burn your fingers.  Lesson learned:  Don’t touch a hot stove.

      When it comes to delegation, we can learn a lot by studying our delegation failures.  I’ve had plenty of opportunity to mess thing up when it comes to the topic of delegation.  Here are eight things I learned through my delegation failures:

      8 Things To Avoid When Delegating

      1. Don’t micromanage.  When you delegate work to someone, let them do it.  When you hang over their shoulder, you exhibit a lack of confidence in their ability to perform the task at hand.
      2. Don’t under-manage.  When you delegate work to someone, don’t forget to check-in.  Your team or delegate may have questions or may need a little clarification from time to time.  It’s okay to let them figure it out for themselves for a little while, but don’t let them flounder to long.  This can be just as discouraging as micromanaging.
      3. Don’t follow the example of poor leaders.  If you had a leader who delegated poorly or not at all, learn from them.  Then avoid the delegation mistakes they made.
      4. Don’t get too far away from those you lead.  It’s easy to forget what it might be like on the front lines.  Take a lead from the hit television show Undercover Boss, and stay tuned into what your employees are up against.  As leaders we have to have empathy for our team members.
      5. Don’t delegate the same way to everyone.  Each of your team members is different, and they most likely need to be handled differently.
      6. Don’t try to do it all yourself.  You will stress yourself out.  You will burn-out.  And you will lose the interest of your team.  Ultimately, you will fail.
      7. Don’t set clear expectations when you delegate.  When your team isn’t told what they are supposed to accomplish, they will fail to meet your expected outcomes.  This includes deadlines.  If your delegate doesn’t now when to have the assignment complete, they may never complete the assignment.
      8. Don’t provide feedback on the results.  Don’t leave your delegate wondering if he did a good job or a bad job.  They need to know, so they can perform appropriately the next time you delegate to them.

      Do you resonate with any of these?  What have you learned from your delegation failures?  What would you add to the list above?