Overcome Resistance to Delegation and Unlock Great Leadership

I write this post “Overcome Resistance to Delegation and Unlock Great Leadership” arising out of a recent leadership coaching session with a client, where self-reflection and feedback played a vital role in guiding my client’s journey toward professional and personal development.

In the realm of leadership, growth is a constant pursuit. It’s about understanding your strengths, acknowledging your weaknesses, and recognizing what drives you.

Amidst my coaching sessions, a significant aspect took centre stage: delegation and empowerment.

Delegation and empowerment stand as pillars of effective leadership.

By entrusting responsibilities and authority to team members, leaders not only cultivate growth within their teams but also enhance productivity and foster trust.

Life is busy and leaders often juggle daily an array of responsibilities and strategic priorities.

The art of delegation allows them to entrust tasks to capable team members, thereby liberating time and energy. This newfound freedom enables leaders to focus on strategic decision-making, shaping organizational vision, and charting a course toward goals.

However, resistance to delegation is a common hurdle to overcome.

There exists a natural hesitation among team members to relinquish control or shoulder more significant responsibilities. Addressing this resistance and empowering teams becomes an essential element of leadership coaching.

Understanding Resistance at Its Core:

To tackle resistance effectively, delving into its root causes is essential. Common reasons for this resistance include the fear of losing control, doubts about team members’ capabilities, lack of trust, and the desire to remain irreplaceable. Tailoring strategies to address these concerns is a key aspect of leadership coaching.

Clear Communication is Key:


Communication – be straightforward and transparent, it is your ally in overcoming resistance.


It’s important to underscore that delegating tasks and empowering teams is an investment in their growth and development.

Skill sets

Highlight to the team how delegation broadens their skill sets, provides fresh experiences, and nurtures a sense of ownership over their work.


Stress to the team that empowerment begets job satisfaction, a boost in self-assurance, and avenues for professional progress.

 Trust as the Foundation:

Trust forms the bedrock of successful delegation and empowerment. A lack of trust in leadership can fuel resistance.

Tip: A culture of trust flourishes when transparency, reliability, and support are the norms.

Tip: Encourage open dialogue, attentive listening, and constructive feedback, fostering an environment where trust thrives.

Tip: Recognizing and applauding team members’ contributions bolsters the idea that their efforts are valued, naturally chipping away at delegation resistance.

Clarity and Expectations:

Ambiguity concerning roles and expectations can trigger resistance. Clear guidelines are essential.

Tip: Define task scopes meticulously and furnish comprehensive guidelines to ensure every team member comprehends their role.

Tip: Establish SMART goals – those that are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound – to steer team members and provide an evaluation yardstick. By setting distinct expectations, you facilitate ownership and empowerment.

Investing in Skill Growth:

Resistance often stems from a lack of confidence or competence. Overcoming this necessitates investing in training and development.

Tip: Arm team members with the resources, mentorship, and support they need to elevate their skills. 

Tip: Furnish workshops, seminars, or online courses aligned with their interests and growth. By showing faith in their capabilities through these investments, you break down the barriers of resistance.

Delegate and Empower

Focus on the need to delegate and in the process empower both yourself and your staff!

Constance Johnson

Constance Johnson

Career Consultant

Need leadership coaching?
Message me to find out how can I help you on your leadership journey!

Pin It on Pinterest