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Grow your skillset: become a master in delegation

While operations managers have a long list of important responsibilities necessary for the successful optimisation of business operations. There’s one crucial responsibility! That of delegating work and responsibilities appropriately between team members for effective operations management.

Therefore we’ve developed a set of useful tips and techniques you can apply immediately within your role as an operations manager. Get ready to learn useful tips and techniques across a variety of industries; beginning with operations management.

As we have mentioned in previous posts, a strong operations manager will quickly identify the strengths and weaknesses of the individuals within their team, and will delegate levels of authority; or tasks, according to this measurement. This approach works because strengths are aligned to the responsibilities of a given role, or the tasks at hand, resulting in operations being more effective and efficient. It’s more likely that operations will be carried out successfully; tasks will be completed timeously, with less error and therefore at less cost if strengths are deployed.

The art of identifying strengths, and delegating skill-fully; comes with time, however, there are a few techniques managers use to assist them in this important function.

1. Identify strengths through collaboration

Team collaboration and communication is incredibly important – and thus extremely useful to you as the manager. Your team is made up of diverse individuals with diverse talents; therefore the only way to find out what these talents (and useful resources) are, is by encouraging your team to share their ideas; prompted by their skills, expertise and ultimately, strengths. The best way to get to the bottom of your team members’ strengths is by asking questions – questions such as ‘What do you think about…’ or ‘How would you handle this situation…?’, or perhaps ‘How would you delegate these tasks amongst yourselves?’. Most times the answers to your burning questions lay within your team, all it takes is effective communication to unlock them.

2. Provide clear instructions and expectations

Once you have identified the strengths within your team and have delegated accordingly, make sure you provide clear instructions; covering all the responsibilities associated with the role or task at hand, as well as what is expected of the individual or the team. Here again, communication plays a key role in the success of your delegating approach. The more transparent you are, the better the execution. It’s also important to remember that while you hand over the responsibility in a full capacity, you as the manager still need to offer support at times, and guide where necessary.

3. Evaluate progress

To validate your delegation decisions, it’s critical that you evaluate whether or not progress is being made. The main objective of delegating is to optimise business functions and processes; to improve operations and streamline practises. If this is not being achieved even after you have mapped out clear instructions and expectations then perhaps you need to consider alternative solutions. By keeping an eye on the results you’ll be able to swiftly develop an alternative approach. With this being said, it’s important to remember that progress takes time, and achieving great results is not an overnight development.

4. Get personal feedback

A great way to achieve effectiveness, efficiency and achieve operational success is through getting feedback from the very person/people involved in the day to day business operations management. Although operations are broken up into smaller tasks. Individuals or teams handling them directly will be able to spot weaknesses or inconsistencies in the chain. In fact, sometimes quicker than even you as the manager will. To create a culture of constant improvement, it’s important that you ‘get your hands dirty’; ask the right questions, find the areas of concern and make changes accordingly.

Delegation does not end with the allocation of tasks and responsibilities – it’s an operation that demands insight; through communication, support and evaluation.

3 ways to future proof your career in an online world

Read the top 10 key findings from the survey here: MasterStart Workforce Barometer Report 2018.

The world is constantly changing, with new age technology engulfing the planet. It seems like everyone is glued to some sort of screen these days. It can be daunting to keep up with the times, and the new gadgets that help make life easier.

Have you noticed the impact of artificial intelligence or robotic automation in your industry? You are not alone! Our study has shown that a majority of employees are wary of artificial intelligence and the process of automation.

Fewer than 20% felt comfortable sharing their workloads with robots or having processes automated by AI. Yes, there is a real possibility that automation will take over human tasks, as organisations look to keep abreast with the ever-changing technological environment. However, we do have access to tools to “future-proof” ourselves against this.

Future-proofing

In order to future-proof your life and your job, you need to remain current in your industry.

Our recent MasterStart South African Workforce Barometer revealed that just 23.8% of our workforce felt completely confident their current skills will guarantee them employment in 10 years’ time. This suggests that people have a high awareness of the unprecedented pace of change and need for nimbleness and adaptability.

The constant learning of new hard and soft skills will entrench the flexibility necessary to manage the breakneck pace of the workplace and ensure sustained relevancy. Given the competitiveness of the market – which will only increase with the rise of automation – having a sought-after skillset is the best way to guarantee ongoing job retention.

Anyone, Anywhere and Anytime

The beauty of online learning is that it is on your own terms. Our study has shown that almost everyone (95%) believed that lifelong learning would help them remain relevant in their careers.

Of those surveyed, who have studied online, listed the following as the “big gains”:

1. Tangible results:

A salary increase, promotion, skills (to be more marketable), more experience and more opportunities.

2. Higher performance:

Better knowledge, keeping up-to-date, a better understanding of the way the workplace works, faster completion of tasks, and having to employ fewer people as they had the skills themselves.

3. Better motivation and soft skills:

Being better at dealing with people, the ability to explain concepts to clients, and overall improved communication skills.

The team here at MasterStart is dedicated and invested into a life of learning. We believe that the secret to current success and future wealth, lies not in the piece of metal in between your fingertips, but in the knowledge and experience, you gain from your life.

Professional facilitators make learning a breeze and continue to support you throughout your journey with us. Stamped with an honourable seal from the University of Stellenbosch Business School.

Read the top 10 key findings from the survey here: MasterStart Workforce Barometer Report 2018.