LEARN THROUGH VIDEO
LEARN THROUGH READING
What are we going to learn?
In this module, we’re going to learn about how to delegate effectively as a pharmacist in a team.
How and why is this learning relevant?
The ability to delegate well is such an important asset for a pharmacist and leader of a team because it can significantly improve productivity in all facets of work. However, mastering delegation isn’t easy. It’s a skill that requires practice, experience and time and is something that many pharmacists struggle with, particularly in the early stages of their career and when starting in a new working environment.
Delegation is an essential part of our work. If we can delegate most of the tasks that do not require our input, our work life will improve remarkably. In this module, I’m going to show you a system I have developed called the R.I.D system, R.I.D meaning getting RID of tasks, which when implemented, will always help you delegate more successfully.
Planning and Action
Why is this learning important?
Let’s break down why this learning is important for you, your colleagues, your patients and the organisation you work for.
Pharmacist – There are so many benefits for you as a pharmacist if you know how to delegate effectively. Delegating more of your tasks to others will free up your time in the pharmacy, reduce your workload and allow you to get things done quicker. It’s a leadership skill that can take you further personally and professionally.
Colleagues – By delegating tasks to your staff, it shows that you trust them to do the job and gives them more sense of responsibility. You’ll be upskilling your team and improving overall performance.
Patients – In a well-delegated team, workplace productivity is improved and this ultimately leads to better patient satisfaction. The happier, more organised we are at work, the better a patient is served.
Organisation – And finally, your organisation is gonna love you. You’ll be seen as a solid leader amongst your team which might open up other doors for you within the company.
What can we do to delegate more effectively?
Know your staff
Before I get into the details of the RID system, it’s worth mentioning this first. If you’re going into a new place of work and want to begin delegating quickly and effectively, the best way to do so is by getting to know your staff on a personal level first. It’s so much easier to delegate a task to a dispenser when you already have a relationship with them because a level of trust has already been established. This is a fantastic reference from CarnegieCoach.com which gives you guidance on how you can build bonds with your staff quickly.
Explain the “REASONS” why the task needs doing
The first part of the RID system is to explain the “reasons” why the task your delegating is important. Too often, a task is given to a dispenser with no background to it and therefore it is:
- Less likely to be adhered to, and
- Seen more as an “order” rather than a meaningful task
For example, let’s say you want to delegate the job of completing an annual complaints report for your pharmacy to Jen, one of your dispensers.
Instead of saying, “Hi Jen. I need you to create this report for me, please. This needs doing then that needs doing…”
You could say “Hi Jen. I have this task that needs doing. Now, the reason behind it is that as part of our Clinical Governance requirements for pharmacy, we need to submit all of our complaints to the NHS…”
Jen might turn around and ask more about what Clinical Governance is which is great! She’s clearly interested in the job, happy to learn more and purpose is being built around it.
Outline the “INSTRUCTIONS” involved
Once you’ve explained why the reasons behind the task, you need to give them specific instruction on how to complete it. So, going back to the previous example, once you’ve explained to Jen the reasons the report needs doing, you can say something like:
“To get this done, you need to go onto this site and collate all of the information on a word document as such”.
Write the steps down on a piece of paper if Jen finds it easier and make sure each action has been understood.
Give them a “DEADLINE”
And finally, you need to give them a deadline to get the task done. By giving them a time-frame, it gives the person more responsibility for the task. So once you’ve checked their understanding of the actions involved, you could say something like:
“Great. So, I was thinking this could be done for 3pm on Thursday which gives us time to look over it. How does that sound?”
By making the deadline a question, again, you’re giving them more responsibility and ownership of the task and you can both come to an agreement together.
Trust and Support
One more thing to add here is the importance of trusting them to do the work and making sure they know you’re there for support only. Don’t keep checking up or peering over them to make sure they’re doing it right. Let them get on with it and just be there on hand if they have any questions.
Delegation mastery is no easy feat. It requires practice, dedication and a commitment to make it a successful habit, but applying the principles above can help you achieve this. When you know how to delegate more effectively, your work becomes more enjoyable, your team will be more productive as a whole, and you’ll be developing such an important personal skill that can be transferred into all areas of your life.
If you’re new to delegation, then begin by delegating small tasks such as admin work for MUR’s or some other paperwork you may have, but always remember the principles in this module.
- What problems do you have when delegating to others?
- Do you have any tips about how to delegate better?
I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below and if you found this module useful, it would be great if you could share it with your colleagues.
Thanks for visiting and see you in the next learning module!