Posts tagged decision making
How to Know When to Keep Pushing

Recently, I was out driving on the highway during a rain storm. I signaled right and started to switch lanes. The problem was that, due to low visibility, I failed to see a van that was moving into the same space. It’s tail swiped the front side of my car.

For the next few days, I drove around with increased hesitation. Before turning, I would double and triple check. My driving speeds were down a few miles. In general, I was more cautious. After a while, however, I was back to my New York driver self, navigating the streets with (semi) reckless abandon.

It’s common for people who experience a setback to be more cautious the next time. The problem is, many folks will often view a single failure as an indictment on past efforts and not try again. For example, they make a large number of sales calls that don’t convert. Or they produce a product, service or program that they believe will sell and get almost no response. So, they quickly throw in the towel and give up.

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When NOT to Delegate

As valuable as delegation can be, there are times where it’s simply not advisable. The following list presents when it’s better to not delegate but rather keep the project for yourself:

  1. The task has not been fully thought through – If you aren’t able to explain the task and its goals in concrete terms, then you have more work to do before handing it off to someone else to accomplish.

  2. The project must be done in a specific way – In some situations, such as an intricate project that you developed and possess intimate knowledge of, delegation may create more problems than benefits.

  3. It takes more time for explain what to do than to just do it yourself – This assumes that this is a one-off project that just needs to be done and taken off the list. A recurring project or one that will provide opportunity for meaningful subordinate development should not be included in this list.

  4. When you really enjoy doing it – There’s nothing wrong with doing some things that can be taken over by others but still provide you with a positive burst of motivation or excitement, such as greeting students and parents in carpool. But learn to limit these so that you can ensure that you’re still doing the work that you really need to be doing.

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