How To Delegate a Responsibility to Your Teen

Mother lecturing her teenage daughter at a park
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As children get older, they are capable of more and more responsibility. Smart parents who recognize this are able to give their teen chores or other responsibilities that used to be done by the parent. Not only can these tasks be given to a teen, but a parent can expect that the task will be completed properly. All a parent needs to do is delegate.

How to Delegate

  1. Clear communication is a must. Be clear about the responsibility you want to be completed.
  1. Explain to your teenager that taking on responsibilities leads to learning self-confidence. It also helps you know that your teen is capable of handling responsibility and therefore, may lead to more privileges.
  2. If the task is a multi-part task, write out the directions on how to get it done. For example, if you want the bathroom cleaned list what needs to be cleaned and what cleaner to use.
  3. Allow your teen to do the task independently. Do not stand over him/her.
  4. Go back and check that your teen has completed the responsibility to your satisfaction.
  5. If your teen has completed the task to your satisfaction, thank him/her. Do this every time the task is completed correctly.
  6. If your teen has not completed the task to your satisfaction, explain what needs to be done to get it right and ask that he/she try again next time. Check step #3 and repeat step #4 through step #7 next time.


  1. Do not get into a battle of wills on any given week. Let your teen know your expectations and that you’ll be ready to check again the following time the task needs to be done.

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