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Leaders come in early as a coach, not late as a judge

The most effective leaders set review dates not just due dates.

This allows them to come in early as a coach, not late as a judge.

It gives the person doing the work the opportunity to leverage your wisdom.

It stops you abdicating rather than delegating.

My favourite book on delegating is the One Minute Manager meets the Monkey. I particularly like the simple metaphor. Clients tell me they have their first good night’s sleep after they read it, because many of them have strong guilt around delegating work to an already busy team. This helps. There’s also a valuable set of chapters around “monkey insurance” and “monkey health checks” (how to make sure that the monkey/project doesn’t die).

You cannot assume that people will just take on responsibility and run with it. It’s impossible that everyone will do that (another One Minute Manager, Leadership and the One Minute Manager outlines how we will have a different style depending on our levels of competence and confidence, and you can’t force people to be in a different quadrant). You’ll have your own leadership style and prefer to delegate from a particular quadrant, but you need to flex that based on who you are delegating to, not on what YOU prefer but what THEY need.

Here are some interesting mistakes around performance appraisal which may help you out (bottom line on this is you can’t assume that a performance management meeting will fix all of the problems, performance management doesn’t happen by accident or even twice a year: if by the time they get to the performance review they don’t know how they’re going you’ve failed as a leader).

Other things around performance management on this blog:

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