The first step in delegation is deciding whether or not a responsibility or task should be delegated.
A good rule of thumb is for business leaders to spend the majority of their time on tasks and responsibilities that directly impact organizational or personal objectives.
These mission-critical tasks that affect long-term success require leadership attention. Everything else is fair game for delegation.
This cut and dry rule of thumb is good when there is a clear delineation between mission critical and non-mission critical activities. For situations with more of a gray area around the nature of responsibilities, use the following questions to determine whether or not a task is worth delegating. The more yes answers, the more likely a task or responsibility should/can be delegated:
* Does someone else have (or could be given) the necessary information or expertise to complete the task?
* Would this be an opportunity to grow and develop another person’s skills?
* Is this a recurring task?
* Has this task not yet been delegated because of expediency, habit, or because it falls squarely in the leader’s comfort-zone?
* Can you schedule sufficient time to delegate appropriately and thoroughly?
* Can enough time be allocated for adequate training, questions and answers, progress checks, and possible rework?