Why Managers Don’t Do Delegation


One of the most common challenges facing managers is that they simply have more work to do than is humanly possible. Yet in my experience they seldom, if ever, delegate. And often when they do delegate they delegate poorly.

The main justifications that managers offer for not delegating are:

  1. it will be quicker to do it myself
  2. it won’t be done to the standard that I would expect

These are nearly always managers who are locked into a stressful cycle of over-work and crisis management. In truth, although they complain about the brutal workloads and the crushing anxieties that they face, they are addicted to the adrenaline of crisis management. They will use any excuse not to change. Their own self-image is too heavily invested in their ability to keep the ship afloat.

They do not believe that they can make the change to become an effective manager and will use any excuse not to avoid having to try.

Progressive Managers are much more than champion delegators to qualified executors.

They are committed mentors, coaches and supporters for training and development initiatives that allow employees to develop their potential and build their careers. They recognise that the first time they delegate something it may take longer and may not be done as well as they would like. This is a risk that they are willing to take (and manage) because they know that this is how they build the capacity of their team. This will provide the opportunity to provide feedback and training to help their team member grow.


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