“It’s just easier to do it myself.” All of us have said it at one time or another. But is it true? Is it really easier to do it ourselves? Not really. In fact doing it ourselves simply causes our team, department, organization, or ministry to be totally dependent on us. When we stay in the middle of everything, everything seems to run smoothly. When we step away, everything goes to (you know where)! Empowering others takes time and energy, but in the long run, it allows things to run without us. This is why empowerment produces freedom! So how can we get there? Here are:
3 Simple Ways to Empower Others:
Allow someone else to run the meeting.
Great meetings shouldn’t just happen when you are in the building. Don’t run every meeting! You are controlling the conversation, energy, and creativity! Allow someone else to run the meeting. Don’t know who would be the best candidate to do this? After you create the meeting agenda, start rotating who facilitates the meeting each week. The best leader will soon emerge. You can even attend the meeting, monitor how much you speak. Allow the meeting to breathe without your input. Ove time, leaders will learn how to facilitate productive conversations and meetings they way that you do, and you can be out of meetings more often! Empowerment produces freedom.
Put someone in charge and leave.
Put someone specifically in charge when leave on a trip, vacation, sabbatical, or something of the like. Tell the person they are in charge. Tell the team this person has the authority to lead while you are gone. Debrief with the team member and various other team members about this person’s leadership conversations and decisions when you return. On the backside, debrief with the team member about what you think was right, wrong, missing, or confusing in the leadership while you were gone. If you have the right person, they’ll get better before the next trip. Over time, we will be able to step away more often! Empowerment produces freedom!
Give responsibility AND authority.
To empower someone means to give them power! Give your leaders power to make decisions! Don’t make them responsible for the outcome if you won’t give them the authority to make decisions. Never penalize a leader for making a mistake. You will paralyze the organization. When (not if) they make a mistake, coach them through it and train them over time to think like you think, see what you see, and respond like you would respond. Over time, they will make better decisions, become a stronger leader, and build a stronger organization that doesn’t all rest on you. Empowerment produces freedom!