I hear a lot about Ã¢â‚¬Ëœwe want to empower xxxÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ but what does empowerment look like? Empowerment means different things to different people. HereÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s my take; when you empower you;
Explore: Talk to your team, find out what engages them, which part of their jobs do they enjoy?, which parts donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t they?; what can you do to support them better?, what new things can you give them opportunity to try?
Motivate: True motivation rarely comes from outside. But when you understand how your people are wired, you can Ã¢â‚¬Ëœmotivate their motivationÃ¢â‚¬â„¢, help them understand what Ã¢â‚¬ËœdrivesÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ them so that they can use that to benefit the organisation and their own careers.
Persevere: Not everyone will be raring to go because you gave them a Ã¢â‚¬ËœpepÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ talk or encouraged them. Give it time and help them work through whatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s stopping them from wanting to step outside their comfort zone.
Optimise: DonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t focus only on their job description. What more can they do or are willing to do based on their skill sets and their interests? What do they do really well that even you can learn from or get them to teach others?
Waive: When your team start doing more, reaching higher etc give up what you may think is your right to take credit for what your staff are doing. Give them the Ã¢â‚¬Ëœthumbs up,Ã¢â‚¬â„¢ keep the spotlight on them for doing more and making you look good. TheyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve earned it.
Engage: Empowerment is not a Ã¢â‚¬Ëœstart and end pointÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ process. It is ongoing process to help your team step away from any preconceived ideas of what they feel they are or not capable of. So ensure you are available to them.
Regulate: Some peopleÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s desire to be more empowered might be high but acting on that desire can take more time.Ã‚Â Use your judgement to pace things.
Now take action: What barriers might you be unconsciously putting in your teamÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s way?