YS6 Delegate work to others in your business


Why this is important

If you find that there is too little time or you have not got all the necessary skills, it may help you to delegate or pass things on to other people. To do this you need to know how to ask others to do work for you in the way that you want.

Who might do this

You might do this if you:

  • need to pass on work that you cannot manage to do yourself;
  • get other people to work for you;
  • brief other people on what to do; and
  • check work that other people do for you.

What it involves

Delegating work to others involves:

  • working out what you want help with;
  • making plans the tasks, responsibilities and targets of work that you delegate; and
  • preparing information that will help people do the jobs they have been told to do.

Other units that link closely with this

YS5 Manage time in your business
OP3 Recruit people for your business
OP4 Sub-contract work for your business

Links to other standards

If your business grows and develops a management team it may be appropriate to consider the following units from the Management and Leadership Standards.

B4 Put the strategic plan into action
D5 Allocate and check work in your team
D6 Allocate and monitor the progress & quality of work in your area of responsibility

What you need to do

  1. Decide which tasks and responsibilities need to be delegated.
  2. Choose people that have the right skills and time to do the work.
  3. Where appropriate, agree work with outside people.
  4. Decide and explain the targets and limits of the work.
  5. Make sure people understand what you want them to do.
  6. Encourage progress by giving any advice, support and training.
  7. Suggest ways to solve any problems that arise.
  8. Monitor delegated work to check that agreed targets are met.

What you need to know and understand


  1. How to set targets for what needs to be done.
  2. How to plan work. (For example by setting short- and long-term targets, breaking down the targets into smaller activities, ordering the activities in terms of importance and urgency and estimating the time involved.)
  3. How to set limits for the way something needs to be done. (For example about timescales and deadlines, costs, use of materials, tools and equipment, quality, health and safety and customer service.)
  4. How to agree contracts with outside people. (For example temporary staff, subcontractors or specialists.)
  5. How to decide if someone is capable of carrying out a task.
  6. How to decide if someone can be relied on to perform the task satisfactorily and responsibly.

Motivating staff

  1. How to delegate authority.
  2. How to communicate what you expect and check that you are understood.
  3. How to motivate people and gain their commitment.
  4. How to encourage others to be creative.
  5. How to offer advice and support. (For example by providing information, giving hands-on help or encouragement.)
  6. How to train someone to carry out a task in the way that you expect.

Checking work

  1. How to solve problems with the work that you delegate.
  2. How to monitor other people’s work. (For example use a work log to write down what you plan to do, then compare this with what you did, review your time a few days each month and note your goals and progress.)
  3. How to assess whether someone is performing well.
  4. What things can be used to show improvements. (For example things that can be measured like time taken, things that are difficult to measure like customer satisfaction or better working relationships.)
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