I get this question a lot: How do you get things done? My answer is – you ask! Is it really that uncomplicated? I mean, delegation isn’t as simplistic as it sounds, or is it? While leading a staff, a team, a project, or a simple task, I honestly don’t get anything done by doing it myself. If I were to rely on my skills, my abilities, my gifts, my talents and my experiences, we would all be in trouble and quite frankly I would fail – often. I would fail myself, the team, the task, the vision, the overall outcome and myself. Delegation is unequivocally the most important discipline in leadership.
1. Build on your flaws – Designate assignments to people who are strong where you’re weak. My favorite example of this is when God spoke to Moses via the burning bush and asked him to return to Egypt to free His people. Moses was apprehensive and thought God had the wrong guy. “I have never been eloquent, neither in the past nor even now that you have spoken to your servant; but I am slow of speech and slow of tongue,” He exclaimed (Exodus 4:10). Therefore, God delegated his brother, Aaron, to assist Moses. This biblical character was articulate, charismatic and able to stand before kings and crowds persuasively. Later, God added their sister, Miriam, to the team. An amazing leader to the women of Israel who served as the creative artist in the bunch. She sang, danced, and celebrated their achievement. If that type of strategic team building is good enough for God, well, then…
2. Let it go – Don’t be so concerned about having control over every detail. Most of the time, when I delegate a project, the outcome doesn’t turn out exactly the way I had envisioned; it’s usually a lot better. If you give complete control to those you trust, you’ll learn that their limitless creativity will exceed your expectations. During a church outreach project this past fall, I delegated the music for the kids program to an amazing singer, songwriter, and producer. She said reluctantly, “But, Eve I’m not a leader.” I told her that I believed in her talent and boy was I blown away. She practiced with the children every Friday for months (without me asking her to do so), rearranged the most powerful original rendition of, “Our God Is An Awesome God,” and the outcome was spectacular, all for His glory. I’m thankful I didn’t stand in her way, I just encouraged her along the way.
3. Keep each task organized and structured – make sure each teammate understands your vision and expectation while providing a time line that includes a deadline. Continuously provide feedback while getting updates on their progress. And last, once the assignment is successfully completed, be sure to thank and reward each team member. Keep in mind, you can be involved and organized without micromanaging by making sure each person has complete creative control.