In past blog posts, we’ve defined the characteristics of anabolic leaders, who truly “lead” and catabolic leaders, who “manage”. https://dutraassociates.com//leadership-inspiring-and-motivating-yourself-and-others/ Today, let’s take that discussion further by looking at how each type of leader delegates.
Most of us have learned that delegation is something that’s important for us to do in order to be effective leaders and to get things done. And, it is true. However, anabolic leaders take it a step further. When a catabolic leader delegates a task, the leader typically walks away from the delegation and leaves the team member to carry on without support. On the other hand, when an anabolic leader delegates a task, they participate throughout the delegation process. In this way, the team member knows that they are supported and valued while they are carrying out the work. Let’s be clear – participating doesn’t mean that the leader needs to do most or even any of the work. Instead, it implies that the leader is available to her team members when needed and will check in at appropriate times to ensure the task is progressing per plan. It also demonstrates that the leader is willing to personally do anything that she asks team members to do.
Here’s an example to consider. Imagine the following scenario. A small business owner is expanding from two retail locations to three. The owner of the company assigns tasks to the key team members. In Catabolic Company A, the owner gets occasional progress reports, but remains out of the picture until everything is done, at which point the team is either praised or reprimanded based on what they’ve accomplished. In Anabolic Company B, the owner not only follows up frequently with the team, but is also on hand to pitch in and work alongside them, letting everyone know that she is part of the team, and that she is willing to do whatever she asks them to do. The team knows where they are at all stages of the project, because the leader has been “in the trenches” with them. In which company are the team members more likely to be engaged and want to do a good job? Which leader is more likely to gain respect and loyalty, and inspire greatness in others?
This month, how can you show those around you that you are a participant, not merely a delegator?
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