Give Ownership to your team to get the best out of them.

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It sucks when you have to do frequent follow ups for the tasks assigned to your team.

Spending extra time for doing some touch up work on the task finished by your team is just killing your own time. When you constantly end up contributing your own time to finish a particular task that is assigned to your team member, you might sometime question the necessity of having him in your team. But his expertise and skills in one or more areas might convince you on the need of having him with you.

It may happen that you don’t even get the time to do your own work!!

Obviously, you might be wondering on ways to get the best out of him. How can I make him more responsible to complete the given task where I can rely on his work completely?

The fact is that he might be doing a task driven job where in there is nothing much for him to contribute. And in his view, you expect him to finish the given task only and he does not worry about the impact of his tasks. In other words, by having him focus on narrow tasks he never has sight of the bigger picture.

  • Give him the full ownership of a job to get the best out of him, not just listing out the tasks to be done.
  • Give him the authority to make flexible decisions but not compromise on the adequacy and accuracy of the job.
  • Make sure your team has everything that is required for them to do their job.
  • Appreciate him on his accomplishment and give feedback for improvement.

E.g. one of my teammate’s responsibilities, at my old job, was to maintain the employee’s personal files and related database and keep them completely confidential. The day she was given keys to the documentation room, she became the owner of the documentation department and become more responsible than ever. And to her that was not just a task of filing documents but she also owns the documents and protects the confidentiality of the company. Moreover she has maintained her own database and accordingly arranged the files in such a way that when some of us asked for any file she was able to say where to find it and what’s in it. Not even a single paper went out without her knowledge and she closely worked with the auditing team too. Even if any HR team member took any documents away she would be behind them like a pit bull to secure it and make sure that it is returned to its correct location after use.

When I say ‘ give Ownership’ you can relate this to an example where a mother in law gives the whole bunch of house keys to her elder daughter in law (which normally happens in Indian tradition) and expects her to protect the whole family after her and she takes that responsibility proudly.

Thus by giving ownership you foster an environment that is trusting, allows flexibility, enables ideas to flow and you are not just making them more responsible for the success of your team but also making them feel valued and helping them take pride in their work.

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