Dumpster leadership is similar to driving to a dumpster and quickly unloading all the things in your car that you don’t want, things you never want to see again. After emptying your trunk or the bed of your truck, you wash your hands and move on. Dumpster leadership hands tasks to others without a heart to develop them or an intentional plan to ensure the work is done well.
Sadly, what some leaders call delegating is really dumping, doing whatever it takes, as quickly as it takes, to get responsibilities off their plate and onto the plates of others. On the other hand, delegating is wise, effective, and loving. Effective delegation spreads responsibilities to others so that the organization can accomplish more while simultaneously developing other leaders.
Dumpster leadership stands diametrically opposed to wise delegation. Here are ten differences between delegating and dumping.
- Delegating is strategic and intentional. Dumpster leadership is haphazard.
- With delegating, the leader’s heart is still engaged. With dumpster leadership, the leader has disengaged his/her heart.
- With delegation, the leader cares who receives the responsibility. With dumpster leadership, any warm body will do.
- Delegating is proactive. Dumpster leadership is reactive.
- With delegation, leaders care about the person being developed. With dumpster leadership, leaders care only about themselves.
- With delegation, the leader is available. In dumpster leadership, the leader has moved on.
- With delegation, the leader shares the responsibility. With dumpster leadership, the leader just wants the responsibility gone.
- With delegation, the leader shares the ownership for the results. With dumpster leadership, the leader relinquishes all ownership. And often assigns blame.
- With delegation, the leader wants the work to develop others. With dumpster leadership, the leader merely wants work off his/her plate.
- Delegating is responsible. Dumpster leadership is negligent.