The true art of delegation

Posted by: on Sep 21, 2011 | One Comment

Delegation has been a buzz word for as long as management books and management training exist. There are millions of theories and “how-to´s” when it comes to delegation in business. But I am not talking about delegation of work, that one does not want to do oneself. I am not talking about delegating projects, but keeping the ownership and the responsibility. I am talking about getting a team involved, creating commitment, true ownership and accountability. Because this is what it needed in a successful company or organisation, especially in times of crisis. We need leaders that burn for the company, show true passion and drive excellent results.

When we at Diaverum started building our new brand, vision and mission (we were previously named Gambro Health Care, but changed the name when ownership changed in 2007), there were many “to do´s” and many decisions to be made. Time was an issue – as it always is – and it would have been easy for me to work with an experienced brand agency on a nice and fresh vision and mission.  To be cited on our website and in our documents. I am saying this, because this is how it is normally done: by an outside agency. But a vision and mission not involving people from within the organisation will never reach the heart and the soul of the employees. This is why I decided to get all country managers and executive team members around a table and jointly develop the brand platform including vision, mission and values. It took us a few days days, including late evening sessions and liters of coffee consumed to arrive at the brand platform which felt right for the company. And the outcome was very positive: There is today a highly motivated executive and country management team in Diaverum eager to deliver on the brand promise and to ensure that all 17 countries which we operate in work in a similar way. Everybody knows the important role he or she plays in making this a reality and it does pay off. Since then, this group of people is “co-owners” of our strategy. We meet twice a year to work on strategy and follow up on our plans and I know that I can fully trust this group of people, having full responsibilities, making their own mistakes and enjoining the results. Certainly it takes a bit of holding back as a leader , particularly when you want alignment, buy in from all key decision makers and therefore trusting one’s team and  not being afraid to delegate is absolutely key for successful leadership.


1 Comment

  1. J. E. Crespo
    September 21, 2011

    Thanks for a simple, well written uncomplicated view of delegation. You are absolutely correct both ownerhip and delegation go hand in hand. I like very much the fact that without a clear internal vision of the objectives team will not be succesful. Cheers,


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