5 Steps to Effective Delegation

How to Delegate for Better Results

by Ben Crawshaw

There’s a difference between being a DO-er and getting things DONE.

And sometimes that difference is in effective delegation.

Now before you say something like, “Look Ben, I’m the only official paid staff member at my church,” lemme say …

“Hold on, pastor… because the principles I’m about to share with you work regardless of whether you have staff or just a team of volunteers.”

Ok, now that we’ve had that exchange, let’s dive in.

Because … there are essentially five steps to effective church delegation.

Step 1 – Cast the Project Vision

So important. It starts with vision. And if it’s a vision worth accomplishing, then it’s a vision worth casting. And vice versa. Look the why is the most important thing to communicate to your audience of potential delegates. The how is important too. But the why is what’s more motivating. So recruit your volunteers by first communicating what they’re getting involved in and why it’s so important.

Two important questions to ask yourself in this regard is. 1) What do you want to accomplish? and 2) What will the result of it look like? Answer these questions yourself first, then you will be able to cast vision to your team.

Step 2 – Determine Evidences of Success

“The happiest and healthiest people are those whose expectations meet reality.”

Begin with this question:  What specific expectations are there for the project to be a success?

Successful projects include “mile markers” along the way. These are things that can be pointed to, measures, or somehow determined. This helps those involved feel a sense of accomplishment and purpose along the way.

Step 3 – Clarify Success Details

Ok, so this is taking step 2 and getting more granular. Ask the question: What details and action steps need to be further defined?

So, in your position, be sure to take each category of the vision and then break down the tasks in bite-size portion. The goal here is to remove as much mystery as possible from what needs to be accomplished to achieve the vision.

Step 4 – Set Immediate Action Steps

Ask yourself the question: What needs to happen now to get the project started?

Here’s why immediate execution is so important. A project’s momentum is absolutely dependent on this. You know the statistic (that’s been quoted for years) is that a missing person has the best chance of being found in the first 48 hours. Beyond the first 48, chances of a safe return aren’t so good. Ministry projects are like that too. They tend to “go missing” from everyone’s radar when there isn’t some immediate action steps in the first 48.

And action creates traction.

Get momentum right away by having implementation occurring at the outset.

Step 5 – Come to an Agreement

Practically, here’s what this means: Have a conversation to discuss and adjust the expectations. Keep the dialogue open. No question is a dumb question and so suggestion is a bad one. It helps foster more buy-in from your team members too.

I leave you with this parting shot.

“No matter how much work a man can do, no matter how engaging his personality may be, he will not advance far in business if he cannot work through others.” – John Craig

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This has been an excerpt from LaunchPad, our monthly leadership program where currently more than 200 pastors benefit from our expert coaching and done-for-you resources.