Delegation: Why do some Leaders and Managers try to do everything themselves?

WRITTEN June 2, 2016 Author: Rich Atkins

noun   del·e·ga·tion   \ de-li-ˈgā-shən \  : the act of giving control, authority, a job, a duty, etc., to another person

Why do some Leaders and Managers try to do everything themselves?

The answer is a four-letter word that begins with “F.” You guessed it correctly – it’s FEAR. Think of all the possibilities to fear when it comes to trusting someone else to complete or take over a task for you.

There’s no such thing as true “fearlessness.” Everyone has fear. Some are better at working through it than others. To move away from fear requires risk. Take the risk to use delegation!

A terrific benefit of delegation is that when giving away a task to a junior it stretches and empowers that person. S/he wants to do well, provided the two of you have a strong working relationship. In addition, it allows you to focus on more important tasks—moving your team closer to the organization’s strategic vision.

What Should I Delegate?

Make a delegation list of everything in your job that you do that you shouldn’t be doing.




Prepare to Delegate

Schedule time – to give sufficient instruction and support (and correction, when needed).

Find the right people – do you have available team members with appropriate skills and expertise?

Choose something meaningful – Is the task related to organizational or project success? Is it important?


·   Tasks that your staff members can do, or need to do well (testing and improving their level of expertise).

·   People who can complete them and grow from the experience.

Decide with them how the tasks will be completed. Use this as a measure to celebrate success.

Overall, when leaders choose to delegate tasks, not only do they remove items from their to-do list, but they help employees take on more responsibility and develop skills needed to advance their own careers. Interesting and challenging work feels good and leads to more motivated employees. Motivated employees, and ultimately, goal achievement, are a win/win for any leader.

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