That Which You Delegate CAN be Delegated Again!

by Shawn Peers, Dental Peers


Good news! We are coming close to the end of our series of blogs on creating accountability through delegation. Today, we will discuss the second last category I have for you. And after that, I will close it out with a few final comments.

Last month, we took our CEO minds to those tasks where you would work closely with your manager to complete. Accountability is built in because you will have regular consultation on how to best proceed with those tasks.

Today, we will address tasks which you should be able to mostly remove from your radar. These are tasks you will delegate to your COO (your office manager) but you may be okay if your manager delegates them to another team member..

In this case, let’s look at the task of putting together a work schedule for the admin team.

Making sure you have the coverage you need is vital to your success. Phones need to be answered, patients greeted and, of course, payments taken. If these front line roles are NOT properly attended to, the patient experience will suffer and so will your bottom line.

Nobody can deny the importance of creating a good and fair work schedule for your team! But creating that schedule is not something a CEO should be doing – this is not even something a CEO should have to review or supervise. Hopefully, your scheduling policies will be so clear, you would be comfortable with your manager delegating this task to another team member. This is not obligatory but I have seen it done quite successfully.

To achieve this, you need to have very clear policies on such things as vacation requests. Specify deadlines for those requests, how those requests should be submitted, and how you will apportion vacation time during those popular summer or other holiday periods. Relying on seniority may be the easiest, but newer team members may not consider it the most fair.

Create a policy that is as fair for everyone as possible and make sure your team understands it. Whoever creates the schedule for your office will appreciate that clarity.

You may not be comfortable allowing your manager to delegate this task to another team member and that is okay. This is your office so you can structure those tasks in a way that works best for you as well as your team.

Allowing your manager to delegate a task does not mean the manager is not responsible for it. If something does go wrong, the buck still stops with the manager!

So make sure your manager does not merely “rubber stamp” the work of the team member they delegated this task to. Make sure there is a plan in place with systems that specify how the team member will carry out the task. Then ensure your manager is following up to see that what has been delegated is being completed – and completed properly.

Remember, delegation is not about pushing blame down the ladder. It is about making sure your team is functioning at peak efficiency. That works best when accountability accompanies responsibility. Make sure you do not have one without the other!

About the Author

Shawn Peers is the President of DentalPeers. DentalPeers is one of Canada’s oldest, continuous operating buying groups exclusively for dentists.