It’s easy for managers to get so caught up in the daily grind that they don’t realize how they spend their time. There are always fires to put out, phone calls to return and requests from your staff for your attention. All of these duties add up, and it’s long past time to go home before you know it.
There is a good chance you are spending your time on tasks that you can delegate. In fact, many of these jobs can be performed more effectively and efficiently by someone on your staff. Once you learn what duties to give to someone else, you can free up time in your schedule, go home at a reasonable hour and spend time with your family. Here are five jobs you can delegate.
1. Small, Simple Tasks
Sometimes, it’s the little things that add up. Some jobs might not seem like they would eat into your time. They can include:
- Booking flights for conferences
- Sending short emails
- Scheduling meetings
- Arranging for transportation consulting
- Copying and pasting data into a system
These jobs may appear small and harmless. Before you know it, though, you’ve spent an hour on the phone or an airline website, and that’s an hour you could’ve spent doing something more productive. Delegate these jobs to an assistant.
2. Tasks That Help Your Team Grow
There may be a job on your to-do list that you’ve always done. Maybe you were the go-to person for this task, and somehow, no one else knows how to do it.
These kinds of jobs can help your team grow. First of all, it’s always a good idea to have more than one person know how to perform an essential task. If you are the only one who knows how to do the job, what happens when you are out of the office?
Second, you can help your team members grow by teaching them new tasks. Learning new things and feeling needed is motivating. Your team members may be glad to perform the new job for you because it helps them.
3. Repetitive Tasks
Some jobs are basically the same, day in and day out. They must be performed regularly, perhaps every week or quarter. Repetitive jobs need to be off your plate unless they are the type only a manager would complete, such as performance reviews.
Delegate tasks that don’t require manager-level authority. Think about data entry, website updates, meeting minutes and similar jobs.
4. Time-Consuming Jobs
Are there things on your plate that always take time to complete? Could the tasks be given to someone else with more time? You can even consider breaking down the job into several smaller tasks. Then you can divide the work among your team members, and they can collaborate to finish the project.
Maybe you have an annual event you plan. Consider delegating responsibility to one team member who can head up the project and assign duties to different staff members. Your employees can benefit from learning new skills and working together.
5. Work Your Team Members Do Better
It can be easy to get caught up in the idea that as a manager, you should know everything your staff knows plus more. That isn’t always the case. Your primary duty is to ensure that certain things are done effectively. It doesn’t mean you have to know how to do them.
Smart managers hire the right people for the job, even if that means you hire someone who has different qualifications than you. Don’t let your ego get in the way of assigning tasks to someone on your team who can complete them effectively, giving you time to take care of high-level work.
It isn’t always easy to let go of tasks you are used to performing — even if it gives you more free time. However, once you learn to delegate, you can get home to your family sooner and find a better work-life balance.