Giving Up Control
To share power really means to give up control — or, to be more precise, to let go of an illusion of control. This is one of those paradoxical situations in which the only way to have something is to let it go. You just need to understand how to give up that control and when.
Setting the Conditions
It would be wrong to suggest that giving up control is like wiping your hands clean, walking off, and waiting until the real work is done. That would be like driving a car by turning away from the steering wheel — an experiment that would not be recommended. Nothing could be farther from the truth.
There is a difference between giving up some control and surrendering all of it. You must create the proper conditions in your team so that sharing power actually works. Giving up control is a measured, and measurable, activity. When you do it correctly, you make it possible to get more done while reducing the risk of people not doing their part.
Pillars of Power Sharing
Although sharing power with members of your team may be concerning and a bit difficult, it is possible. What you need to do is establish two aspects of power-sharing that allow you to do so safely and effectively. One is empowering employees to make decisions and delegating responsibility to them. If you don't give people the authority to do things, they won't be able to do them.
The other is delegation. You actually have to extend responsibility outward to team members so that you don't become the final bottleneck on everything the team tries to do. As team leader, you're still ultimately responsible. But you extend responsibility to others, deputizing them so they take over something on your behalf while still responsible to you.