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Why Managers don't delegate work?

Updated: Sep 2, 2021

There are indeed reasons for everything. From what we do to what we don't do, everything can be analyzed and rationalized. And when it is our office life, we ought to reason and we should. Delegation is supposed to be the chief role of a leader, failing which often sends us to question the person in charge. It is not wrong when leaders/ managers do the real work, but it is not taken too well on the colleagues' or subordinate's part, where they might not get the fair opportunity.

Here is Why Your Manager won't Delegate work!

In fact, the whole point of leadership gets diluted. Here is some analysis of Reasons why managers don't delegate work-

1. We are all Insecure

And it is only human to say the same about our leaders too, who we look up to. The growing competition does not stop for the best. Our leaders are the best of their time but no one can stop evolution when everyone is aiming for betterment. Hence, insecurity is one strong reason, that makes the managers hesitant to delegate. It takes a great deal of hard work to be somewhere one is currently at and so takes more time to give it off.

With insecurity, lack of trust also accompanies. A good reason to not delegate work- there could even be a selfish reason too when a manager sees too much of potential in a candidate/ subordinate. Yet, a slight benefit of the doubt is a must as a manager might be strategizing a subordinate's growth. A real possibility of the team members not being proficient enough to take up the work or not diligently working on the project makes it difficult for the manager too to inbuilt trust.

3. Thinking too Perfect of yourself

It is not untrue that a manager has achieved or may even have overachieved but it is counted as one bad habit of a manager. And when perfection is the only thing one is looking for, then one has to understand that there could be more people together, who can help achieve a goal equally well than single-handedly.

4. Too scared to Fail

This happens to a lot of people, especially overachievers. We are all scared of failure and so are our leaders. Our managers are very much concerned about how they feel when they need to take charge and deliver the work personally to make sure it is done to the right standard.

5. Too attached to let go of their work

Having a concern of overload is one thing, and staying attached to it is another. And delegation also explains one great quality of a manager. Think about this like, can you promote yourself when others don't do your job?

6. You are a Micromanager

When a manager is micro-managing work, even though, he asks a team member to work on some task, he wants to manage each and every piece of task. Your way may be the perfect way, but with the involvement of newer people, perfectness can be achieved.

7. Desire for the Limelight

The one who does all the work does get recognized and stays in the limelight for long. A manager should also learn to give the required credit when he has to make people work and make people work well. That evidently will shift the attention to the employee. But your credit as a leader will definitely stay there as per your role.

Result when Manager does not delegate work to the employees-

Not being able to assign/ allot/ delegate work definitely shows a manager to be not in the good side. A control of the subordinates just goes away as a person to look up to. The trust that you might be looking for in the employees has to be initiated from a manager only, otherwise, the team will not be able to coordinate with you, let alone with each other.

Other consequences include-

  • Bad Planning and Organizing

  • Not being able to develop or bring out the complete potential of their subordinates.

  • The team gets restricted by creativity

  • A manager won't be able to win over team members and hence cant build up their morale

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