Brighton Chamber: Ten top tips for effective delegation

Serena May
Serena May

Serena May, who heads up Sussex business the HR Dept, led one of Brighton Chamber Bite-sized Learning sessions in May, ‘Save time by becoming an effective delegator’.

Here are her top tips :

1) Use delegation as a proper managerial tool
Delegation is not about getting rid of tasks you don’t want to do. Use it in order to develop your staff members, build their skills, experience and engagement.

2) Pick the right people
Make sure they have the skills and knowledge but also the resources to do the job otherwise do not delegate. Train them first: use this good training rule of thumb “I do, we do, you do”.

3) You can delegate part of a task
If you are not able to delegate the whole task, think about the possibility of delegating part of the task.

4) Communicate the rationale and benefit
Explain the reason for the task and how it will contribute to the company goals. Also, point out how the task could benefit the person. Value it.

5) Make sure people understand what you expect
It can be counterproductive to delegate if you do not clearly explain the task and the expected outcome. Check that people understand by asking them to describe back to you the task at hand.

6) Set realistic deadlines for completion
Set framework and deadlines and check progress. If the task is complex check its progress with regular meetings along the way.

7) Give people freedom
Follow this rule of thumb: ‘More what and why, less how’. Give them freedom and resources. Then let them devise how they will achieve the outcome. They will enjoy it more and will most likely do a better job.

8) Be available for support
Do not micro-manage but don’t disappear! Be there to give support, feedback and assistance especially when people ask for it.

9) If you’re not satisfied with the progress, don’t take the project back
Rather, continue to work with people. Ensure they understand the task to be their responsibility. Give advice on how to improve. It will ensure accountability and dependability.

10) Give feedback and recognise results
Make sure you debrief afterwards, give constructive feedback. Reward and recognise the results, especially if it was a big task.

Serena May is the director of the HR Dept which does business in Brighton and Hove, and Eastbourne.

To find out more about the HR Dept, visit:

For information on upcoming Brighton Chamber Bite-sized Learning sessions, or to find out more about the Chamber, visit: