Whether as a consultant, as a manager, or generally in business when you have people who report to you –you have to be good at the art of delegation.  You cannot take on every single task and every single project. There simply aren’t enough hours in a day to allow you to successfully accomplish every task that needs tending to. Delegation is key to the success of a business. Even if you are coming in as a consultant, you want to be an asset to the team. Productivity, time management, and efficiency are necessary. The way to accomplish all three? Delegation.

Here’s the thing about delegating –you are letting go of some control. Not everyone believes that. Many believe that you can affectively tell someone what to do and also exactly how to do it. If you want to master the art of delegation, you have to actually loosen up on the reigns a bit. What do I mean by that? Well, you can instruct someone on what you want them to do or how you want them to do it, but not both.

This may seem a little strange. You are assigning a task to someone because you don’t have time to do it yourself or your skills and time would be better used elsewhere. Doesn’t that mean the person doing your task in your place should be doing it in the exact same way? I would argue –no. When you delegate a task to someone, they may not do it the way that you would have. This doesn’t mean that you won’t get similar, or even possibly better, results. When you delegate, you want the task completed. How it gets completed is another story.

Consider that everyone thinks, for the most part, that their way is the best way. When we delegate we are opening the door to new perspectives, processes, and executions. If we all walked through life completing tasks in one uniform way, where would the innovation come in? Maybe you’ve been executing a process or task one way for years, only to delegate that task to someone who comes up with a completely new process. Maybe they’ll cut the execution time in half. Maybe they’ll develop a fresh approach that is far more effective.

Learning to delegate is a skill. Allow for control of that task to be handed over is an art form. Let your employees be the stars from time to time. If you allow opportunity for growth, change and innovation, it’s more likely that these things will occur. Does that mean that you should pull back all guidance? No. Obviously you can still make people aware of what can work, but don’t make everything feel rigid and boxed in. There is room for improvement, change, and new ideas.

So, when delegating, do you want to be telling someone what to do or how to do it? What is more important? What allows for more growth and innovation? What are your thoughts on not dictating the exact way a task is to be completed? Comment below!