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What your current team challenges say about your delegating style

How you are showing up for your team sets a precedence for how they are going to show up for you.  While delegating may seem pretty black and white – get the things off your plate that you shouldn’t be doing – your delegating style is either creating a monster or creating your dream team.  Following are three different delegating styles.  What’s yours?

The Ostrich

You are great at giving your team the freedom to work independently, your schedule is free from team meetings (which you consider a waste of time), and you have successfully delegated things you don’t have to do, and never looked back! 

The challenges you are facing with your team: You are constantly let down by the outcome of your projects and you don’t understand why.  Balls are dropped on a regular basis and you get constant text messages and emails from your team with questions you think they should have the answer to.

What your team is experiencing:  Your team is just trying to keep up with your next idea and they are in constant reactive mode and doing things last minute.  They only know the plan for the next month (or less) and they don’t have a clear picture of what success looks like for the projects they are working on or how they contribute to the big picture.

The Paranoid Parent

You have reluctantly delegated some basic tasks but still hold onto things only because they are too important to have someone mess them up.  The things that you have delegated you have created step-by-step instructions for how they should be done.  Your time is split between serving your clients and running your business alongside your team.  

The challenges you are facing with your team:  Your team never takes care of things proactively.  You always have to ask to get something done – if you don’t ask, or if you don’t bring it up, it won’t get done.  You get constant questions about how things should be handled and most of the time tasks end up back on your plate for you to handle yourself.  

What your team is experiencing:  Your team cruises along, getting the tasks done just like you have instructed them to.  However, it’s a little boring because there aren’t any opportunities to add in their personal creativity or feedback.  And, it’s really frustrating because they lack any confidence to handle something that comes up without running it past you first.  


Your team works independently and you have successfully delegated the things you shouldn’t be doing.  Your time is split between serving your clients and creating the vision for your business.  You regularly meet with your team for productive meetings that are focused on big picture planning.    

The challenges you are facing with your team: If you are experiencing any challenges with your team they can be directly attributed to someone filling a role that is not aligned with their strengths.  Any other challenges that come up may be a result of a process or system that you have outgrown as a team and that needs to be revisited. 

What your team is experiencing:  Many of your team members have been with you for several years and have grown with you and your business.  They know when to get your feedback on things and when they can run with a project and just keep you updated on their progress.  They really feel like they are a partner in your success and they love the work you are doing together. 

If you need to course correct, have an explicit (and loving) conversation with your team about how you are feeling and how you are going to start showing up differently.  Get their agreement for how they can show up differently and ask for their ideas about how they can hold you accountable to your new delegation style.  This will be an awesome moment of growth for you and your team.