Why We as Women Need to Learn to Delegate

Why Women Need to Delegate?
You need to be more essential and less involved. When you justify your hold on work, you’re confusing being involved with being essential. But the two are not the same — just as being busy and being productive are not necessarily equal. To know if you’re guilty of holding on to too much, answer this simple question: If you had to take an unexpected week off work, would your initiatives and priorities advance in your absence?

This means shaping the thoughts and ideas of others instead of dictating their plans, having a sought-after perspective but not being a required pass-through, and seeing your own priorities come to life through the inspired actions of others.

Too many of us are in a constant state of overextension, which fuels an instinctive reaction to “protect” work. This survival instinct ultimately dilutes our impact through an ongoing, limited effect on others

I lead people, priorities, and projects — in that order 

1. A manager alone cannot perform all the tasks assigned to him. In order to meet the targets, the manager should delegate authority. Delegation of Authority means division of authority and powers downwards to the subordinate.
2. Delegation is about entrusting someone else to do parts of your job. Delegation of authority can be defined as subdivision and sub-allocation of powers to the subordinates in order to achieve effective results.
3. Duplicating the energy to accomplish the objectives within the scope of your responsibility or targeted goals. OR the Power of Many
Understanding the Role of Delegation within your team
Start with your reasons. When people lack understanding about why something matters and how they fit into it, they are less likely to care. But if you give them context about what’s at stake, how they fit into the big picture, and what’s unique about the opportunity, then you increase personal relevance and the odds of follow-through. Instead of giving just the business justification, make it a point to share your reasons. You can’t motivate somebody to care when you can’t express the reasons why it matters to you

1. Deciding the what, the who, and the when
1. Assess who can do what you need them to do. Ie, It all starts at the HIRE.
2. Starting with small projects allows for increased roles.
2. Confident in delegating (Or Not)- Understand your own limitations in delegating AND looking at the makeup of your team and whether they are able to take on the responsibility of the tasks.
1. Why can’t I delegate?-Assess your own thoughts and limitations.
2. Enabling team members to Step Up and Assume additional duties and collaborative responsibilities. Know who wants more.
Okay, so now I have delegated…but how do I remain in the loop
Engage at the right level.  Too involved, and you could consciously or inadvertently micromanage those around you; too hands-off, and you could miss the critical moments where a supportive comment or vital piece of feedback would be essential. To pick your spot, simply ask people what the right level is based on their style 

Practice saying “yes,” “no,” and “yes, if.” Start by carefully assessing every demand that comes your way, and align the asks with the highest-valued contributions that you’re most skilled at making. For those requests that draw on this talent, you say yes and carve out the time and attention to be intimately involved. But for those requests that don’t align, you say yes, if… and immediately identify other people to accomplish the goals through their direct involvement. You may still consult, motivate, and lead — but you’re essential as the catalyst, not as the muscle doing the heavy lifting

1. Constant loops of conversation during the delegation process
1. From whom to whom
2. Setting the expectations-single project or long term objectives.
2. You are ultimately responsible for everything within your department/company SO….stay in the loop so that there are no surprises.
1. Make sure it is communicated what is expected and how delegating is an opportunity to “shine” for direct reports.
3. Micromanaging vs. guiding
1. Independence should be given to carry out the task effectively without “holding their hands” in the execution.
2. Keep a balance between authority and responsibility.
3. Watch, listen, and course correct (if needed)
4. Granting Authority of decisions- How do you create the platform for consistent decision making from top to bottom.
1. In systems thinking, which was my MBA emphasis, sharing iterations of how and the why with our direct reports, they were able to pick up the process for decision making and actions. This is a form of support through insuring that you set them up for success.
Delegation was a success. Now What? OR Delegation didn’t work. Now What?
Inspire their commitment. People get excited about what’s possible, but they commit only when they understand their role in making it happen. Once you’ve defined the work, clarified the scope of their contribution, and ensured that it aligns with their capacity, carefully communicate any and all additional expectations for complete understanding. This is crucial when you have a precise outcome or methodology in mind. They can’t read your mind, so if the finished product needs to be meticulous, be equally clear-cut in the ask. Once clarity is established, confirm their interpretation (face-to-face, or at least voice-to-voice, to avoid email misinterpretations). “But I told them how I wanted it done!” will not be the reason the ball got dropped; it will simply be the evidence that you didn’t confirm their understanding and inspire their commitment.


1. What are your next steps when delegating is working for you and your team?
1. Sitting down and having that “acknowledgement conversation.” Let them share with you why and how it was successful.
2. Ask them for next opportunities that they may want to take on?
2. Delegation that is not successful.
1. Sitting down and having that “tough conversation.” Let them share what they think went wrong. Address the facts and the issues of their management or factors in that failure.
2. Acknowledge that responsibility still stands with you…but …

Drink Like a Lady with Kathie De-Chirico Stuart & Joya Dass
Kathie is a brand strategist. Joya is a recovering journalist. Each week, on the Drink LIke a Lady Podcast, they share tactical advice to support women getting a seat at the bar —and the boardroom.