What’s Your LOA?

What’s your LOA – Your Level of Authority? How far can you go to satisfy your customer’s need without having to get permission? How sure are you that someone higher up in the pecking order won’t override your decision and undermine your authority, making you look weak in front of your customers or staff? What level are your direct reports at and how much autonomy do they have to make decisions without your approval? You can call it delegation – you can call it empowerment – you can call it what ever you want to call it but you’ve got to get it off your plate and on to theirs.

General Levels of Authority.

Level One: Get the facts – I’ll decide

Level Two: Suggest alternatives – I’ll decide

Level Three: Recommend an alternative – I’ll decide

Level Four: Decide – wait for my approval

Level Five: Decide – act unless I say no

Level Six: Act – report results

Level Seven: Act – report if unsuccessful

Level Eight: Act – reporting not needed.

Your job is to give your people the opportunity to grow. What do you need to do to keep moving them up the ladder? The higher the level – the less time you’ll need to spend putting out fires. The higher the level – the more time you’ll have to do what managers and leaders should be doing. Everyone can be at different levels. It just depends on how comfortable you are that they would make the same decision you would have made. I like to move everyone up to level six – what about you?

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