As time as passed and I’ve matured, I realize that being the jack-of-all-trades is not that glamorous. It is better to be masterful at a few things than proficient at everything.
As a leader, it is important for me to “do only what only I can do”—Andy Stanley said this once when he pointed out the necessity of using his gifts for his job. I’ve made this statement not just a motto, but a way of life. I am very intentional to delegate what I can delegate. I strive to empower others to use their gifts where I know I am not gifted.
When we bring others onto the scene of our life to accomplish what we are not good at, we will in turn get more done with more excellence. As a leader, if I am not giving things away to others, I am limiting the organization I serve only to be as strong as I am at any given moment.
True shared leadership is beyond delegation of tasks; we empower leaders to run with certain parts of our responsibility, with shared authority, resulting in greater impact.
Doing only what only I can do is a mindset. It’s intentionality to maximize my unique skill set. I cannot be someone who just holds onto things because I think I can do it better than so-and-so. Or worse yet, I can’t do things I hate or am not good at because I think others will hate that task as well. There are others around you who would have half the struggle you have to get done the things you hate because they don’t hate them half as bad.
When letting things go, we must remember that sometimes “done” is better than “done my way”. It is important that to delegate certain projects so I stay focused on the things that only I can do.
How this plays out in my life:
One of the best things I can do for my church is to preach well. That means I have to be spending time in God’s Word. I have to be prepping my sermons well. I have to be making my slides excellently. I have to be thinking through all of the other details around my message, such as the room dynamics, the use of the Bible, the setting of the stage, the outline in the bulletin. All of these details are things that I can do.
Some of these items have related tasks that I don’t have to accomplish. However, it’s important that I am leading in these areas, but delegating tasks that are not the best use of my strengths, passions or responsibilities.
Preaching and preparing well means that I have to give things away that will fight for this time. There are certain areas of finances, facility management, staff oversight and operations that I have to delegate to other leaders. If I don’t, I will be stepping into areas which I am not as gifted, and in turn steel from what is most important for me to be accomplishing.
So ask yourself these questions:
- What am I doing that I could empower someone else to do?
- Are there parts of my routines that need to change to incorporate others into tasks I shouldn’t be doing?
- Is it worth it to me to talk to my boss about what he or she expects from me and evaluate what can be handed to others without disappointing expectations?