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Leadership Strategy: Delegation and Empowerment

Delegation and empowerment are both very valuable management tools and practices. While both are utilized for managing an organization, they do it slightly differently. Each method can be useful in the right circumstances, but success ultimately rests on the manager's and company's philosophies and approaches.

The primary distinction between empowerment and delegation is that the former develops leaders while the latter develops followers. In tense situations like the ones described above, a decisive leader must act.

1. Assigning Tasks

Leaders use both approaches when dividing tasks among their teams or department teams. An alternate frame of mind and set of objectives is needed for each strategy. However, no matter the selected technique, the leader is still in control. Assigning work and picking workers to do it remains a core managerial function.

When a member is assigned to perform a task, generally, the leader will specify what he/she wants to be done, how she/he wants it to be finished, set deadlines, and follow up on the member's progress as provide comments.

2. Discretion of Resources

If the member is granted discretion, they will be given access to more resources and knowledge about the organization, and they will be expected to use that data to guide their tasks and ultimately take responsibility for their output. Therefore, power and authority are only granted through empowerment. However, empowerment will fail if members aren't given access to all relevant resources.

Having stated this, resistance is generally greater with empowerment from a leadership position as it includes more than assigning a task, indicating that certain authority has to be given up. For some leaders, empowering their staff means giving up control and diminishing their importance. Therefore, they may prefer to delegate instead.

3. Do it your way

Additionally, empowerment is more helpful and productive in the long run, even though it may appear time demanding. When team members feel like they have a say in how things get done, they are more invested in the outcomes and are more likely to go above and beyond to get the job done. All in all, all control and accountability are kept by the leader in both ways. Increased usage of empowerment as a motivational tactic in the workplace is another trend.

4. Good Decision Making

Next, the ability to make decisions is an important indicator of delegation. Delegation is a division of labor where supervisors assign a member specific roles and obligations. Even said, the delegation tells members they are valued and trusted if essential tasks are allocated to them. Delegation not carried out effectively might result in problems such as de-motivation and declining staff retention. It could encourage people to think they are entirely responsible for what they have specifically been authorized to do. Try to link decision-making and delegating so they have some input and engagement in this process. This will ultimately offer them a sense of value to the organization.

These leadership methods necessitate the establishment of fundamental concepts like open lines of communication, defined roles and responsibilities, consistent feedback, and a reliable foundation of trust. In contrast to delegation, empowerment is the transfer of power and responsibility to the individual. The leadership skills of delegation and empowerment are useful but in different contexts. To put it another way, delegation is the process of entrusting subordinates with sufficient authority to carry out tasks on your behalf, whereas empowerment is encouraging subordinates to take the initiative on their own.


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