Here's how you can make delegation work
Delegating work, responsibility and authority is difficult because it means letting others make decisions which involve, among other things, spending company money.
However, at a minimum, an executive or manager must delegate enough authority to get work done and should allow assistants to take enough initiative to keep the operation going.
Delegation is perhaps the hardest job executives have to learn. Some never do. They insist on handling many details and literally work themselves into an early grave or worse.
Others pay lip service to the idea, but actually run a one-man show. They give their assistants many responsibilities but little or no authority. They miss the first lesson, which is to allow assistants who are competent to perform in their own style rather than insisting they do things exactly as the executive would personally do them.
Authority is the fuel that makes the machine go when you delegate work and responsibility. It poses a question: To what extent do you allow another person to make decisions which involve spending company money? That question is not easy to answer. Sometimes you have to work it out as you go along.
Yet if you are trying to run your company or your department successfully, you must learn to delegate authority. At a minimum you should delegate enough authority:
To get the work done.
To allow key people to take initiative.
To keep things going if you're absent.
Delegation of responsibility does not mean that you say to your subordinates: "Here, people, you run the show." The employees to whom to delegate responsibility and authority must be competent in the technical areas for which you hold them accountable. But technical competence is not enough.
In addition, the person who fills a key management spot in an organisation must either be an executive or capable of becoming one. A manager's chief job is to plan, direct and coordinate the work of others.
The executive should possess the three "I's" -initiative, interest and imagination. The manager of a department must have enough self-drive to start and keep things moving. This individual doesn't have to be reminded that employees must begin work on time.
However, delegation doesn't end with good control over a department. It also means training or coaching staff members and preparing them for leadership. It entails keeping them informed, because they will need facts to make decisions.
Finally, the executive must be willing to make delegation work by allowing subordinates to do things their way. It will seldom work if you measure an employee's efforts by your own style. You must look only for results.