Poor communication is the downfall of the best intended task delegation. Assign a best-by date to your tasks, coupled with an explanation for that date, to increase communication and decrease time spent managing follow ups.
Productivity blog Productive Flourishing highlights the effectiveness of using best-by dates instead of absolute deadlines:
Best-by dates are a handy way to let people know when you need something without imposing a deadline. They are similar to the best-by dates on orange juice – you might finish the carton before or just a little after the best-by date and everything’s okay, but too far past that date and it’s gone bad.
For added effectiveness, add “so [reason] ” behind the best-by date. Instead of asking someone for their TPS reports via email, you could say “Hey, please submit your TPS reports. A best-by date on this is Wednesday so I have time to review them before forwarding it on.” A when coupled with a reason why is much more effective than just relaying the request because your recipient has an action date and a purpose in mind.
Check out the full article at the link below for more tips on using best-by dates and how to communicate clearly what they are.