This is one of the helpful distinctions that the Manager-Tools guys make… And it suits volunteer organisations like churches pretty well.
When you talk to someone about taking on a task or a project, work out whether you are assigning it to them, or delegating it to them.
The difference? Bosses assign work to employees; “here, you are responsible for this. This is your ‘job’”. Leaders delegate their responsibilities to volunteers; “Hey, I’d like you to help us by taking on this thing I’m responsible for. Keen?”
A few notable differences:
– assignments can be questioned, but in the end, they can’t be declined.
– the line of responsibility is more vague when delegating. Who’s really responsible for what at which point?