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Empowerment can boost self confidence and morale, increase engagement, encourage a 'can do' attitude, improve productivity, increase job satisfaction, encourage creativity and innovation and improve customer service.
I therefore thought it would be useful to highlight some key areas to consider as you start to develop your post lockdown business strategy. These will be relevant to you whether you are a business owner, director or manager in a business.
So how can you empower your team members? Here are some areas to consider:
Trust and respect your team members. Do you trust and respect your team members? Trust, respect and empowerment are intertwined. If you don't trust in and respect your team members you are unlikely to empower them, as you will lean towards micro management and being directive. However where there is a high level of trust and respect for your team members you will have the confidence to coach and empower them.
Ask, don't tell. Do you tell your team members what to do or do you ask them questions? Telling a team member what to do creates a dependency and does not encourage learning. Asking questions enables the team members to create their own solutions, learn and develop in their role. When you are next asked by a team member for an answer, try asking a question rather than answering.
Set boundaries and guidelines. Have you set boundaries and guidelines for your team members? Boundaries and guidelines don't restrict team members, they empower them. By defining the boundaries and guidelines within which a team member can act they know where they are and have the freedom to manage their own decisions. What boundaries and guidelines do you need to set for your team members?
Be clear about roles and responsibilities. Are your team members clear about their roles and responsibilities? It is very difficult to empower team members if they are not clear about their role and responsibilities. Each team member should have a clear job description and fully understand their responsibilities, such that they can manage their work within these parameters.
Invest in learning and development. Do your team members have access to the learning and development they need to fulfil their role and responsibilities? In order to fully empower a team member learning and development is paramount. Consider all aspects of learning and development from on the job training to more structured courses in specific areas. Learning and development may be anything from how to complete the role to personal and management development.
Delegate work and responsibilities. Are you delegating work and responsibility to your team members?To enable your team members to grow and develop they need to be delegated work and responsibility and you need to support the team member to take on the work and responsibility, not just pass it over and expect them to be able to do it. By properly supporting your team members to take on additional responsibilities and tasks you will see them grow and flourish.
Proactively manage your team. Are you proactively managing your team? Proactive management is essential for developing and empowering your team. Proactive management includes sharing the company vision, goals and plans, agreeing team and individual goals, objectives and plans, regular team and one to one meetings, performance management, constructive feedback, support, encouraging communication at all levels and investing in the development of each team member.
Hopefully, this article will have given you some areas to consider in empowering your team.
Author: Liz Makin
Published: July 2020
Makin It Happen has a range of personal development online courses to purchase, created by Liz Makin, including anxiety management, communication, resilience, soft skills, stress management, time management and coaching. Liz Makin also provides personalised business coaching, business mentoring and stress management services to business owners, directors, managers and professionals.
Please email Liz@makinithappen.co.uk to arrange a FREE consultation session to discuss our business coaching, business mentoring and stress management services for business owners, directors, managers and professionals.