Good Grief! Do you Delegate like Lucy or Charlie Brown?
I must admit that, while most of my work is cool, last week provided me with an opportunity that was cooler than cool: I was invited to facilitate a delegation workshop at 20th Century Fox’s animation studios, with the teams that are making the new Peanuts movie (in theatres November 6th, by the way). Between the production teams, and the story teams, and the animation teams, and the talent teams – they’ve got a lot to do and not a lot of time left to do it.
So how will they get it all done? By delegating. Which is, of course, easier said than done.
Most of us are well aware of the benefits of delegating, which include lightening your workload, developing your staff, providing opportunities for collaboration, offering your team members a sense of ownership and empowerment, giving you an emergency back-up, retaining talent, as well as growing and challenging yourself (both to take on new tasks and to learn how to “let it go”). And yet, despite the myriad benefits, many managers don’t delegate well – but when they do, their style is either too Lucy” or “too Charlie Brown. (tweet this)
What’s your delegation style?
You may be a Lucy if:
- You joke about being a “control freak” (but you know it’s not a joke).
- Everything feels urgent to you.
- You are addicted to adrenaline.
- You need to be in charge.
- You tell people not just what to do but how to do it, and don’t welcome others’ input and approaches.
- You’re deeply concerned about credit and blame.
- Your style is command and control.
You may be a Charlie Brown if:
- You find yourself mired in minutiae.
- Most of your tasks feel comfortable to you.
- You hoard work.
- You realize someone else could do it but so could you.
- You worry about being seen as dispensable.
- You don’t want to overload your team.
- You want to protect your staff from stress or failure.
- You’re worried about messing things up.
- Your style is just to do it yourself.
You may be either a Lucy OR a Charlie Brown if thinking about delegating gives you hives, sweats or stomach pains (or makes you want to cling to Linus’ blanket.) Either way, delegation is a critical competency for anyone who has too much to do and not enough time to do it (tweet this), for anyone who is charged with developing and empowering others (tweet this), and for anyone who realizes that in order to move up in the organization, they need to make sure that their current work can be done by others so that they’re not stuck doing this (whatever your “this” is) for the rest of your career (tweet this).
If you’re a Lucy, it’s time to show your team that you believe in their talents, that you can be flexible, and that you’re as committed to their development and growth as you are to getting it right. If you’re a Charlie Brown, it’s time to show your team that you value and trust them, that you’re resilient in the face of setbacks, and that you’re ready for all of you to play a bigger game – even if you need to hold on to your security blanket for a while longer.
If you or anyone on your team is wrestling with delegation, you can instantly download our online 60 minute course “Delegate without Drama” and learn the eight steps to help you start giving up a little bit of control and gaining a few more hours each week without giving up your commitment to quality