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Page Title: Assignment of Duties
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perform   specific   functions,   duties,   and   tasks. Good  personnel  management  involves  your recognizing  that  every  individual  uses  a  basic knowledge,  skill,  or  ability  in  performing  a  task and that each person’s capacities should be fully used.  In  dealing  with  these  types  of  dynamic aspects in an organization, you are not expected to  be  a  management  engineer.  However,  as  a senior   petty   officer,   you   should   be   able   to exercise  your  leadership  responsibilities  to  deal capably  in  the  area  of  human  relations,  In  this sense, leadership can be defined as the capacity to   direct   or   influence   the   behavior   of   others toward  specific  goals.  In  carrying  out  this mission,  you  will  find  that  your  responsibilities do not stop with the assignment of duties and the delegation  of  authority—you  must  also  control the  functions  and  tasks  performed  through  the proper  training  and  supervision  of  your  people. Accordingly, the people in your organization must clearly  recognize  and  understand  what  their  duties and responsibilities are, what authority has been delegated  to  them,  and  to  whom  they  are  account- able  in  the  chain  of  command.  In  the  following sections, you will discover some of the principles that  govern  the  dynamic  aspects  of  personnel management. ASSIGNMENT  OF  DUTIES Duties are the tasks an individual is required to perform. One of the principles of organization you  should  observe  is  that  every  duty  that  is  to be performed must be assigned to someone. This means  that  the  obscure  or  once-in-a-while  jobs must be assigned as well as the jobs that are done each  day.  When  individuals  are  assigned  jobs, they should have a thorough knowledge of all the procedures  involved,  the  publications  or  other directives required, and where they can obtain this type of information. Persons who are assigned to jobs should also know the order in which various steps  of  the  jobs  should  be  performed.  In  addi- tion,   people   should   recognize   that   they   are expected  to  complete  the  tasks  in  a  minimum amount of time and yet consistently demonstrate a  certain  level  of  quality  in  workmanship. Fair Division of Work Another principle you should observe regard- ing  the  assignment  of  duties  is  the  fair  division of the workload. Don’t make the mistake—which is  very  easy  to  do—of  having  your  best  person do all the work. In the first place, your error will result in penalizing the person for being a good, dependable worker. When this individual leaves, the division will be in a mild form of chaos until someone  else  can  be  trained.  Furthermore,  by placing   the   burden   of   the   workload   on   one individual, you fail in developing the potential of your  other  workers. Recognition of Responsibilities The principle of unity of command states that the  final  responsibility  and  authority  at  each  level of  operation  must  rest  with  one  person.  This means that responsibility for the accomplishment of  each  task  should  be  assigned  to  one  specific person.  While  some  tasks  cannot  be  performed without a team, only one individual in the team should  have  the  responsibility  for  seeing  that  a certain  job  is  done.  Unless  your  crew  members recognize what their responsibilities are, jobs are either  not  going  to  get  done  or  are  going  to  get done  haphazardly.  Even  though  individuals  are given special liberties, they should know they are still responsible for seeing that the jobs assigned to them must be carried out in their absence. This is an important principle that you, as a supervisor, must  get  across  to  your  people. DELEGATION  OF  AUTHORITY Another  important  principle  of  organization for  you  to  follow  is  that  authority  must  be  com- mensurate  with  responsibility.  Authority  is  the delegated  right  to  make  decisions  in  order  to  fulfill a  certain  responsibility.  Authority  involves  the right to require actions of others, and the rights of  individuals  to  discharge  those  obligations  for which   they   are   responsible.   Remember,   you should  delegate  authority  as  far  down  the  level of  command  as  possible  without  loss  of  control over policy or procedures. Keep in mind, however, that  delegation  of  authority  in  no  way  relieves superiors  in  the  chain  of  command  of  their overall  responsibility.  A  superior  is  ultimately responsible even though the subordinate to whom the tasks are assigned remains accountable to the superior.  Here  are  some  guidelines  you  can  use for  effective  delegation  of  authority:    Provide clearly stated policy guidelines to your   subordinates. Set  up  proper  controls  and  procedures. 3-15

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