What is your employee thinking?
One key principle of the Management By Delegation Program is to “delegate through the lens of the employee.” This is highly useful. The trick is how to accomplish this mind melding level of communication. Science sheds light on how this works. In a recent article, in Discover magazine, Amy Barth discusses research completed by Lauren Silbert at Princeton in an article entitled “Good Listeners Get Inside Your Head.” This research involves some pretty complicated Neuroscience around how the brain can “anticipate” what may be going on in another person’s brain during communication. So what does this have to do with management by delegation? A whole bunch!
Delegating past Time & Attention
2 Keys to Delegating Work Assignments
- Think ahead about how the Employee might see the Assignment – Where a manager is going to delegate an important task or project action step, they can stop and think about how the employee may see the assignment. Give some thought to past experience with this employee’s assignments. What is the employee involved in now that might affect their perception of the added task? What has been the history of this persons execution of work? What is going on in their business or personal life that could affect how they engage the new assignment? Just think about these items and then be prepared to communicate accordingly.
- When Communicating a Work Assignment, Listen, Listen, Listen – the ongoing science of communication clearly supports the importance of effective listening. Do we apply this lesson, which we have all heard before? We are talking about the intensity level and focus of how we listen to others. For the manager, when delegating and discussing the task to be given, the responses of the employee are essential to effective delegation. The manager needs to ask questions to clarify and make sure the employee has understood the assignment. By working hard to become an “attentive listener” the manger will get a much better look at how the employee is thinking about the assignment. The manager can anticipate their responses and then seek better clarification.
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