Effective Delegation: Define the What But Delegate the How
Startup Codex

The art of delegation is an essential skill for a manager. In the context of a startup, not delegating enough is simply blocking the development of the company.

As Tomasz Tunguz reminds us in this article, delegating effectively means to share objectives, without imposing the route. To empower people, and leave room for innovative decision-making.

He mentions Peter Drucker's recommendations, such as the importance of appointing a Directly Responsible Individual, and being able to measure results, with a framework such as OKR.

The difficulty of decision making is illustrated by an excerpt from an interview with former President Obama: "Nothing comes to my desk that is perfectly solvable," Obama said at one point. "Otherwise, someone else would have solved it."

<span class="colour" style="color: rgb(0, 0, 0);">Define the what but delegate the how. Great delegators decentralize decision making. John Boyd talks about the importance of decentralized decisions in Certain to Win. They key concept is the OODA loop (Observe, Orient, Decide and Act). There are lots of benefits to this. Speed is the most obvious. This management style engenders trust by creating space for others to be creative and grow. It opens up the solution space to novel ideas.</span>