Photo by Hamed Saber
Empowering delegated leadership is as important to leading as baseball mitts are to baseball. You can still play without it, but very soon you will notice significant decreases in your effectiveness.
When a leader delegates, he or she is allowing others to take responsibility and experience what it is like to lead. A leader can use delegation for a number of reasons; to relieve themselves of a certain task or role so they can focus on larger ones, to let someone else gain some experience, or even just to work more in line with the way God has created them and allow someone else to use their God given gifts.
There really are three key reasons why a leader should delegate in a way that empowers others. The three reasons are:
1. No one person can do everything. The more you are able to delegate the closer the organization is to reaching its goals.
2. To help the leader stay focused on what is really important
3. To raise up and build up new leaders.
As a leader, it is very important to share your vision and plans, and one key way to do that while leading others is to delegate. When you delegate your leadership, the people who you delegate to will have their own ways of doing things, often times better if they are gifted in that area but they will probably catch a lot of your values. The old saying goes, “The Speed of the leader is the speed of the team.” So if you have a vision that you want shared with others, simple give certain people specific tasks or roles and the ability to help accomplish your organizations goals.
Can you think of a time when someone you looked up to gave you a task to help complete a bigger project, and because of that you became much more interested in the whole project? Well, now it’s time for you to use that same idea. I can think of a time when my dad was to be involved with a big Franklin Graham revival. As a kid I wasn’t all that interested in it, but he asked me to help by being in charge of parking cars. Because he delegated that responsibility to me, I got involved and interested in the success of the entire event. Bringing others into the loop of what you are doing and asking them to get on board is a great way to increase ownership.
To help you stay focused on essential activities, it is sometimes useful and even necessary to delegate certain tasks and jobs to others. In doing this, you make it possible for you to be completely focused on a few vital jobs, while letting others do more menial tasks or things that you should not be focusing on.
A leader must be able to recognize when they are getting overloaded with extra tasks and when they need to start delegating. If you, as a leader, allow yourself to get bogged down with tons of tasks, you effectiveness will drop dramatically. One of the reasons for the great success of the E-myth was the idea of working on your business or ministry and not just in it. If you are only doing the work and not focusing on how to increase the work or do the work more effectively or involve more people in the mission you are not likely to grow.
Finally, delegation helps build up new leaders. You will not be around forever, so you need to start building up a few people who could take your place or take on other leadership roles. No one can just jump right into a leadership role, so you must start slowly and delegate certain small tasks first, and then move on to bigger and bigger jobs for the new leader to do. Eventually, you will have a very competent and useful co-leader to help you accomplish more and lead others better. Don’t let your fear of being replaced stop you from building up new leaders. In fact, if insecurity only plays a negative role in your leadership. Make sure you deal with that head on and speak the truth to yourself. Instead, instill every bit of knowledge you have and do everything you can to help a new leader succeed.
Are there some areas of responsibility that you could be delegating to others? Over and over again I have seen the joy that others have when you delegate and area of responsibility and they are able to be involved with the organization’s goals in significant ways. Frequently, you should take a step back from your problems, tasks and to do list to gain some perspective and see if there are things you can pass off to others. Even the earth looks small from a distance.