The Art of Delegating Ė donít take the monkey!
Delivering the Boss's IdeasMister D isn't worried about being rewarded for what he is doing, because he's secure in the knowledge that most bosses seldom fight the source of their own success.
As he approaches my office he finds George, Ms. A, Mr. B. and Mr. C (my four amateurs prior to their conversion) sitting in the row of chairs outside waiting urgently to see me, each on a different matter. As he thoughtlessly passes by them, they motion him to the empty chair at the end of the row. Normally he would take his place in line except that now he has one of the bossís ideas under his arm - and what could be more urgent? He therefore continues toward my door only to encounter my secretary who heroically pantomimes Horatio at the Bridge. She tells him I am not to be disturbed as I am working alone today trying to come up with an idea. She looks at him incredulously when he tells her that he has already come up with it and wants to waste no time delivering it to me. Taking advantage of her confusion he beats upon my door. In a white rage over the insubordination such conduct rep≠resents, I stride from behind my desk, proceed to the door and open it a crack to get a good look at the culprit."I've got an idea here," he whispers, "that could get you a few brownie points." "Hurry in," I whisper, locking the door behind him. "I'm fresh out of them." †
We go back to my desk and huddle over his papers together as he gives me a briefing. He's not three minutes into his argument before it suddenly dawns on me that I should have thought of this one. Elated, I interrupt him and blurt, "This, Mister D, is a terrific idea, and how glad I am that I just thought of it!"Well - I did just think of it, did I not? He just made me think of it. It was my idea, wasn't it? He gave it to me. It's people like him who make me think of the things my job description says I'm paid to think of, who give me the ideas my job description says I'm paid to have. That's what distinguishes the "pro's" like him from the amateurs and novices who will sit forever outside my office waiting for me to "earn my money." †
Whereupon Mister D breaks into a broad smile of deep satisfaction. He has just succeeded in coming up with one of his boss's ideas instead of one of his own.