“What is…” Wednesday – What is Delegation? Alison’s (Give and) Take

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The truth?

I dream of Scott and Abbie using only one word to describe me – Indispensable.

As such, you can imagine my horror (Yes, horror. A second word Abbie and Scott would use to describe me would be “Dramatic”) when I saw Harvey Mackay’s recent column discussing how good managers need to know when to delegate. “The most successful managers aim at making themselves unnecessary to their staff,” McKay advises.

Uh-oh.

Call me crazy, but isn’t unnecessary the exact opposite of indispensable?

Talk about a detour out of my comfort zone. And yet, I am going for it.

So, today I ask for advice – what is delegation? How does one delegate successfully? How does one avoid micromanaging? How can one go from handling day-to-day tasks to “scanning the horizon, studying the industry and our company’s future,” as Mackay describes it?

Some tips from Mackay to get the ideas flowing, as paraphrased by moi:

  • Explain yourself! Learn how to give simple yet complete instructions rather than telling others how to do things exactly like you.
  • Get over yourself! You are not the only one who can do this job – establish expectations, standards and walk away.
  • Come back! After you walk away, be sure to check back in and offer constructive advice.
Alison Bailin
Alison Bailin
Senior Account Executive Alison has a lot to say…about pretty much everything...all the time. From the current state of public relations to the social media impact on Shark Week to crisis communications in the sports world, Alison’s blogs are focused on “amusing through her PR musings,” and then some. Check out Alison's full bio

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