Leadership – Delegation

Ok. Now what? Leadership again!!! Why am I so obsessed about writing on this topic? Some of my friends and infact even my wife told me that the previous one on ‘Leadership – Form the team‘ was little too much to read. Few used the word boring. There were mixed reaction – few told me they liked it and many told me they did not. I will try to make this one different.

Three friends working in various leading IT companies got togather…

Basu: Hi guys. How r u?
Kasi:  Fine man… Long time, Haah!
Jai: Yes guys, long time. I was wondering why you guys always work so late in office, even after these many years of experience! Make some time for personal life.
Basu: What to do man! Our work-life balance depends on how much our boss expects from us.
Kasi: Exactly…
Jai: Not again. Don’t start ‘I hate my boss’ talk.
Kasi: Yeah. You don’t care man? Your boss likes you and you are enjoying.
Basu: True. My boss only dumbs me with all junk work.
Jai: Don’t you have a team? Delegate.
Basu: Already its my bosses work that got delegated to me and you are asking me to delegate to my team members. That won’t work.
Jai: I do it all the time. It works.
Kasi: And your team is happy?
Jai: Why do I care?
Basu: You don’t care because your boss likes you. I care because I don’t want my team to feel about me the same way I feel about my boss.
Kasi: Atleast our bosses are helping us in that sense.
Basu: Hmmm…
Jai: Hey, this is not fair. How do you know my team is not happy. They are happy because I give them work that gives them exposure to the next level.
Basu: Is it? So, when your boss assigns something to you and you delegate it but project as if you did it and they are still happy! What are they, Gods?
Jai: Hey, enough.
Kasi: Man, no one likes it when someone steals their work and get the credit. That is why we have ‘Patents’ in the world.
Basu: And that is also why all the artists sign their drawings.
Kasi: Yes. I agree. Delegation is also an Art. In the Art, the artist (in this case Delegator) need to convince the audience (in this case the delegatee) that its worth spending their time – seeing or money – buying.
Basu: Nicely put.
Jai: But who gets the credit – Artist or the Audience?
Basu: Artist gets the credit for his work and Audience gets the painting. In your case both goes to you.
Kasi: See, if you delegate something to your subordinate, he must be happy to do that work and he should get the credit for their work. And you can’t delegate everything.
Basu: My boss delegates everything but his salary and certificates.
Jai: What certificates?
Basu: Anything given in appreciation of a task accomplished.
Kasi: Bad. Surely you will not be happy.
Basu: Yes I am not. On top of it, he is saying that I am not a good delegator.
Jai: May be you are not. Why don’t you delegate that to your team.
Kasi: If we all keep doing this delegation to the next level, then all the CEOs tasks will be done by the freshers who are joining the company.
Basu: Exactly. Not everything can be delegated to next level. If I keep delegating everything when will I learn.
Kasi: Yes. If you are not comfortable doing a task, then you should not delegate it. There is a chance that you did not explain it correctly to the delegatee and the overall task will be messed up.
Jai: I agree. How many times you want to do the similar tasks over and over again?
Basu: I agree with both of you. You need to delegate the task that you are more comfortable with and perform the new tasks by yourself. There are 2 benefits. Even if the delegatee messes the task, since you are comfortable doing it, you can take it up and do it. You also avoid doing the similar tasks always. New task, you yourself can do and get comfortable with, after doing it few times.
Jai: Exactly. You got what I mean.
Basu: Man you don’t talk. You delegate everything to your team.
Kasi: Don’t talk like that Basu. After all he is our friend.
Basu: Not just our friend… his bosses friend too. Infact he is more friends with his boss than us. 🙂
Jai: Cut it man.
Basu: Okay, ok. I have another problem. I am not getting the credit for the work that I do – my boss takes it. How am I supposed to delegate it to my team and make them feel happy about doing it.
Kasi: Atleast you project to your boss the actual person who did the work. He is going to get credit from your boss.
Jai: Don’t do that man. Before you know, he will replace you in your role.
Kasi: Thats just your insecurity feeling.
Basu: I would say – Lack of confidence.
Jai: Whatever? I got what I want. Role, promotion, visibility at next level and whatever good things that you guys are longing for.
Basu: Thats because we are working with a boss like you and you are working with a boss like us.
Kasi: Yes. I agree you got everything. What about your team? Did they get what they want? Are they happy?
Basu: How does he know? He doesn’t care?
Jai: What?
Basu: Man you only said you don’t care.
Jai: You guys are just jealous.
Kasi: Either that or not very political like you.
Jai: Eitherways, i have grown and you guys are not. Its not my problem
Basu: We are not yet done with our careers. Lets see how long it goes.

Conversation continued.

I don’t know who is right and who is wrong.

I have written these may blogs and not many has commented to my blogs. Atleast this one, I think would call for some discussion. May be yes or may be not.


About saravanah

Saravanan is a happy and carefree person, who doesn't have any kind of hobbies except for watching TV and sleeping. Most of his time is spend in office or commuting to office. At his home, he simply chooses to sleep. He is interested in cooking, reading somethings, chatting with friends, sudoku, etc. but hardly does any of these :) He has completed few years of his service in IT industry, which is very evident from his bald, fat and old look. Never the less, he is young at heart and physically very tired. He just got married and offlate he is taking various steps to keep his wife, parents & in-laws happy. Just like any other married man, he is confused and knows-not how to act/react to the situations. He enjoys the love and company of his wife and the affection that his parents are showering on him.
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