For many of the leaders I work with, delegation is a real struggle.Leaders resist delegating because we are so accustomed to doing the work ourselves. Many times, fear will rear its ugly head, thinking that if we want the work done correctly, we must do it ourselves. And then there is the time issue of communicating and training others to complete the task for us.Ahhh, but the benefits of delegation far outweigh the negativity that surrounds this illusive skill. When we delegate, we have more time for our high-priority tasks and we actually get to experience the joy of completing our tasks! Delegation increases our productivity and is a muchbetter use of our resources.Delegation gives us freedom from chaos and confusion. True, there are some tasks best kept to ourselves such as personal matters, confidentialactivities, crises, and activities that are specifically delegated to us. However, we can delegate paperwork, routine tasks, technical matters, tasks with developmental potential, and employee problems that we do not need to be involved in. Since we are not born with the delegation gene, we must learn this skill. It’s not as hard as you think! Just follow these four simple steps and you will be delegating before you know it:1. Explain the need for delegating, including the reasons why you selected that personto complete the task.2. Clearly set the objectives defining responsibility, level of authority, and deadlines.3. Develop a plan to achieve objectives, resources, and give the authority necessary toobtain those resources.4. Establish an accountability plan with checkpoints.Somehow we’ve managed to complicate the idea of holding people accountable, and it is quite simple, really, I mean simple, the acronym, SIMPLE: S = Set clear expectations – this is the number one complaint and stressor from employees – that the expectations are vague.I = Invite commitment – some say gain “buy in” but I much prefer to invite commitment. With an invitation, there is a shared sense of ownership.M= Measure progress – Super important to keep up on this. How you will measure is part of the description of setting clear expectations.P = Provide feedback – again, super important. Far too often managers will wait until the project is finished to say that it wasn’t done correctly.L = Link to consequences – consequences are also identified in the setting clear expectations step.E = Evaluate effectiveness – Do this together and it becomes a powerful activity for you and the person who is accountable.I would love to hear from you. What are some techniques you use to hold people accountable and why do you think the strategies are effective?With Love,Maria
This is the time of year when we go through our closets, files, and other places that tend to get cluttered throughout the year. Perhaps this de-cluttering ritual exists to prepare ourselves for the holidays and many more guests in our home. In any case, it is always so freeing to go through the ritual of de-cluttering and taking back our space.When we are surrounded with clutter, our stress levels increase making it more difficult to stay alert and committed to our goals and tasks. Clearing is so helpful for us to stay focused on our work and reaching our goals in the home stretch of this year. It gives us the white space literally and figuratively to work with clarity and without distraction.In today’s blog, I want to share with you a book that has helped me tremendously with this process. The book, Throw Out Fifty Things, author Gail Blanke suggests Four Rules of Disengagement. I like the simplicity of her rules and have simplified them even more! These four rules are a powerful guideline for un-cluttering.Rules of Engagement:
- How you feel: If the stuff in your space hinders movement, makes you feel bad, feels like it weighs you down, is in the way of getting to something, get rid of it.
- Addition factor: If the stuff just sits there adding nothing to your life, saps your energy, does not give you joy, get rid of it. Remember that standing still is not really static, while everything or everyone around you moves forward, standing still is just another way of moving backward. Get rid of the negative to make room for the positive.
- KISS principle – Keep It Simple Silly: There is no reason to make these keep or toss decisions complicated. If you have to think about keeping or tossing too long, get rid of it.
- Kick fear to the door: You are reclaiming your time, creativity, and productivity. You are reclaiming your life! This is not a dress rehearsal, this is it, your time, your life. You can’t afford not to un-clutter. As Nike has taught us, Just Do It!
In Thursday’s blog I’ll share with you 7 steps to guide you as you move from room to room. Good luck!With love,Maria
Sometimes we find that we have too much on our plates. Okay, that can be both literal and figurative. When we have too much on our plates literally, we experiences unhealthy consequences such as weight gain, high blood pressure, heart disease, and more.When we have too much on our plates figuratively we become overwhelmed and stressed and we suffer unhealthy consequences such as weight gain, high blood pressure, heart disease, and more. Deja vu!As we move into the fourth quarter of the year, it is a good time for us to look at our plates and see what’s there.The following exercise is one I do with my clients and is very helpful to take a good hard look at what’s on your plate:
- First, section your plate into eight different sections:• Spiritual• Work/career• Personal growth• Family• Financial• Living environment• Community/volunteer• Health/wellness
- Next, identify challenges or issues from the sections of your plate.
- Finally, review each section of the plate and answer the following questions:• What can come off my plate?• Where can I take control and shift some of the responsibilities?• Pay close attention to your feelings as you complete this exercise. Do you feel resistance in an area, relief, or something else?
When you complete the exercise, commit to at least one change on your plate per week between now and the end of the month. Remember, it takes at least 21 days to set a new habit.Good luck and let me know how it goes!With love,MariaDr. Maria Church, CPC, is a leadership coach, speaker, and author of Love-Based Leadership: Transform Your Life with Meaning and Abundance and her upcoming book, A Course in Leadership: 21 Spiritual Lessons on Leadership, Love, and Life. Maria holds a doctorate of management in organizational leadership, teaches at several universities, and is CEO of Dr. Maria Church International LLC, a leadership coaching, development, and training firm. For more information, visit www.DrMariaChurch.com.