Have you delegated a task, only to find out that the result wasn’t what you expected? Do you micromanage because you want things done properly? Many PTA leaders fail to delegate because they think it’s quicker to do it themselves, they can’t trust others to do the work or feel that they will just end up re-doing it themselves so they may as well do it from the start. They are usually afraid that tasks won’t be completed in a timely manner or to a standard that they expect, so they often don’t delegate.
Delegation isn’t just a matter of telling someone else what to do. Truly effective delegation is assigning the right tasks to the right people and then guiding them to be successful in their tasks. When you match tasks to the right person, you also further the PTA as a whole because as people gain confidence and experience, they will also grow as leaders. Delegation is a critical component for an effective PTA.
So how do you effectively delegate? Here are a few tips:
- Develop an action plan for tasks, giving timelines, deadlines and expectations to your team. Give people plenty of time to ask questions and then complete tasks.
- Check in frequently, but don’t monitor too closely. Setting progress update meetings from the start will allow you to set your expectations and check in along the way. It also gives you a chance to make sure that the project is moving in the right direction before it is beyond the point of no return. Don’t be afraid to give constructive feedback, but also don’t micro-manage.
- Break down larger projects into smaller tasks and delegate pieces out to an entire group of people. This can help keep work manageable while developing a team atmosphere. Again, just be sure to assign tasks to the correct person to keep the project moving. There is nothing worse for your volunteers or board members than waiting on someone else in order to complete their own work.
- If something does fall through, don’t take the work back on yourself. Use caution if you need to re-delegate tasks to another person, as that can cause hard feelings between people. Accept that sometimes things need to fail to succeed.
- Be sure and give credit where it’s due but don’t place blame when things fail. The end result was a team effort, whether it succeeded or failed.
Delegation takes some practice but will free you up to do the things that only you can do for the PTA. When you delegate effectively, you can save time, balance your own workload, and achieve more for your PTA, while furthering the growth of the organization and future leaders. That’s a win-win for everyone!