John Quincy Adams, the sixth President of the United States has said, "If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader." A leader is someone who can inspire people to pursue a common goal. He is a person who can be looked up to. He is someone who is capable of accepting challenges, taking risks, celebrating successes, and learning from failures. Leadership qualities include foresight, planning skills, selection of a good team, efficient execution of tasks through delegation, and consistency.
A leader should be both efficient and effective. Efficiency implies being self-organized and skillful, while an effective leader instills in the minds of his teammates, devotion towards their work. For a leader, it is important to dream and work out a fail-proof plan towards its fulfillment. A leader should be able to set a goal for his/her organization and plan for its accomplishment. Being fair and understanding towards the team is another essential quality that a leader should have. Leadership involves the ability to communicate one's plans to the team and lead the team towards the realization of the company's goals.
Some are born leaders while others develop leadership qualities with experience. According to Frenchman Henri Fayol, leading is one of the basic constituents of management and delegation of tasks is an important component of leadership. Delegation eases the task of a leader by facilitating sharing of responsibility. It makes the team members feel responsible for completing their tasks in time. Delegating is like recognizing the worth of the team members and acknowledging their abilities by deputing them with important work. For a leader, learning how to delegate tasks is necessary.
How to Delegate Tasks
Select the task that is to be delegated. Delegation is not just simple assignment. It is the sharing of responsibility with proper control. After all, it is the leader who has to get the assigned task done. It is the leader's responsibility to be in control of the delegated work. Task analysis becomes a vital factor in delegation. As a leader, it is your responsibility to analyze the task and split it into subtasks, which can be deputed.
Recognize the capabilities of the team members and select a suitable candidate to depute the task. Communicate with the chosen member about the way in which the assigned work is to be done. If you wish to give the team member the freedom to devise his/her own ways of accomplishing the task, convey that to him. It is necessary to state or describe the results you expect from the assigned task.
Delegation implies assignment of authority to a team member. Assigning authority comes with the risk of violation of the company's standard practices. In case the candidate is unaware of the company rules, he/she may end up executing the assigned tasks in an undesirable way. Thus, it is important to communicate to the delegate, the amount and scope of authority given to him/her.
Scheduling the task is necessary if the delegated work has to be completed within deadlines. As a leader, you must establish and maintain a schedule. Regular follow-up of work helps keep the team members on their toes. Provide them with assistance if required, and encourage them to complete the assigned tasks on time.
Delegate tasks, not for reducing your workload, but for helping the team members learn and grow. Delegation is a way by which a part of your responsibility is taken up by someone. Moreover, it's a way to help the employees attain professional growth. Delegating tasks gives them the opportunity to explore new things, exhibit their potential, and excel in their career.