Leaders Need to Stop Taking Work Back

Sometimes leaders or managers will find themselves taking work back from their employees. This is often due to a manager who likes to micromanage and hasn’t been taught effective ways to handle this challenge. In this episode, I cover the two times this usually happens, and how a leader can stop taking work back by approaching each scenario to make sure her team members do the work themselves.

Stop Taking Work Back from Your Employees – Listen Now!

Stop taking back work that your employees can do themselves

I see this kind of regularly with business leaders and managers – their team hits a wall with a project, and the next step of that project winds up back on the leader’s plate. There are two times this usually shows up.

First, let’s look at the times when there is a problem that warrants your attention, but it is something that your team members could handle. The first thing in this situation you must do is recognize that YOU have trained your team to do this – to bring YOU problems that THEY could fix on their own.

Here is how you stop taking back work in this scenario:

Instead of you saying, “I’ll handle this,” coach your employee on how to handle the challenge and support them in that effort. That will keep the work off of your plate!

Stop taking back work from an employee because of the way they do it

Stop taking the work back – and check in on your micro-managing tendencies. To do this, ask yourself if the work is getting done to a satisfactory level. If it is, and you still feel the need to take the work back – you need to work on your delegation skills.

But let’s say the work isn’t getting done to a satisfactory level.

The first step is to write down what isn’t up to par about the work. Is it the timeline, the end result, or something else? Note what isn’t getting done well. I would also suggest that you look for things within the same process that are being done right – that can help ease the impact of any criticism you have to give.

Once you know what is off about the work, then it’s time to sit down with the person responsible for doing that work.  Then you discuss with them the work problems you are seeing, and show them how the work needs to be done. Discuss what the outcomes need to be. Then, and this might be the most important thing here – ask them what they need access to, in order to get those outcomes. If they don’t have an answer to that, though, a good place to start is with additional training.

Once you’ve had this part of the conversation, discuss what needs to change and decide on a timeline to make that correction. Then, schedule a meeting to revisit that plan. If it’s a longer-plan that will take more than a month or two to correct, you’ll want to have check-in discussions scheduled.

Stop taking work back, but follow up during those meetings and discussions to make sure your employee is supported. Connect with me to further discuss this strategy.

Stop taking work back and focus on delegating

As a leader and a manager, you must be able to delegate work, but you also must be able to make sure that work doesn’t get back onto your plate. These are the basic steps involved in ensuring your team does the work you need them to do, while also supporting them through any challenges that come up.

THAT is delegating at its finest.