Empower your employees

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As a business owner you want to work with people that believe in your vision, inspire your employees by empowering them. Empowering employees helps them to feel as though they are an important part of the success of the business.

Get to know your employees As the business leader, it is up to you to form a relationship with your employees. This will facilitate better channels of communication with your employees and they will feel comfortable enough to approach you.

Give them responsibilities in the business Start-up entrepreneurs often struggle with delegating tasks effectively within the business. This could be a fear of letting go and trusting other people with your vision. When you delegate responsibilities to your employees, you make them feel empowered. Affirm their position in the business by getting them involved.

Make them part of the decision making processes Give your employees the ability to make decisions and you will see they take pride in doing so. Not only that but they can learn more about your business and work towards becoming a business leader themselves.

Challenge them to think critically Allow room for your employees to share their ideas about the strategic development of the business. As the business leader, encourage your team to communicate with you about what is happening, what can be done to improve things, and what is going well.

Always provide feedback It is your job to coach and train your employees. You need to provide ongoing feedback to your employees so they know where they stand. Those who are told what to do and taught to do it will perform better.

Empowerment is about enabling your employees to do better. This can be done through skills development, building better relationships with them and getting them involved in key decision making processes.

How do you empower your employees?

Post By: SimplyBiz . This post has been repurposed for this blog. Original article can be sourced from: ezinearticles.com

 

 

 

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19 comments
    This is such an impportant and often overlooked component in making your company more effective! If your organization is looking for a way to speed processes and still produce quality materials and services focus on employee empowerment. When you show an employee you trust her and give her timely information and the authority to find solutions she will be able to solve problems and provide solutions more rapidly than someone without that empowerment. Increasing employees creativity job satisfaction decicion making abilities ensures not only a better company but solidifies employees loyaly. Any ideas on great ways to implement this?
    I think it's also highly valuable to teach that it’s o.k. to make mistakes: If you empower employees to make decisions that will help keep customers happy then you have to be willing to allow them to make mistakes and learn from those mistakes. Berating an employee who tried something new will only serve to keep others from trying new things. Companies should create an environment that celebrates both successes and failures: Don’t just celebrate the successes celebrate the employees who took a risk but maybe didn’t obtain the results intended but learned valuable lessons themselves and for the company.
    Fully agreed. If your people don't feel safe in making mistakes it's unlikely that they'll ever take any risks. Perhaps even worse they'll struggle to make decisions without you meaning that they'll constantly be pulling on you for your input. That might not sound so bad if you're someone who likes to control every aspect of your business. But if you do become successful you'll quickly realise that it's an impractical use of your time which is your most valuable resource. Someone who has great stuff to share on the subject of progression and growth by embracing the risk of failure is Carol Dweck. There is a lot of her work on the web but you can get a good intro to her thinking here at TED: https://www.ted.com/talks/carol_dweck_the_power_of_believing_that_you_can_improve
    It is also an ongoing process allowing teams to become the heirachy looking at various situations and discussing them together to determine how they might handle things differently in the future to achieve a different result. But isn't this is really what our lives are all about...learning new things as we age by analyzing the things we’ve done in the past. Why should it be any different in business? @patrickkayton what are the initial steps to take in initiating this culture for a business that has yet to implement it?
    The extent to which you empower your people depends largely on your culture and as a founder that depends entirely on you. And you can pay lip service to empowerment but what really matter is the way you behave. You can tell people that they can make their own decisions but if you keep deciding for them they're not empowered. You can tell people that it's ok to take risks but if you come down hard on them for making mistakes they're not empowered. You can say that your people are autonomous but if you define their tasks too rigidly you're taking away their ability to make their own decisions and see them through and again they're not empowered. If you want people to make their own decisions give them the space to choose a course of action. It might not be the one you'd take but if it works that's ok. And if it doesn't they'll learn and next time they'll get to a better conclusion quicker. If you want people to take risks then pat them on the back for going out on a limb. Their creativity will blossom. Because you can't come up with good ideas when you're scared. If you want people to act with autonomy give them modest direction in the tasks you set then back off until they're done. Then before you judge their output ask them what they learned from the experience. If this doesn't feel comfortable that's perfectly normal. Be patient. Give it time. The feeling of reward you'll get when you see your people pulling in the same direction for your business will make the discomfort all worthwhile.
    Another way to think about empowering your people is through their own personal development. You might think that personal development programmes are a luxury that only established companies can afford but startups are fertile ground for learning. Learning about business about the industry you're in and learning about yourself. Learning programmes can be formal with scheduled skills-based training. Or you could develop a culture of always being open to learning and being on the lookout for teachable moments. Or anything in between.
    That is a great idea - why not start with yourself! What courses can we take as business owners in South Africa do you know of any?
    What is your take on quality circles? For a business owner that battles to let go of control I think this is great way of gettingideas that you may not have neccesarily thought of as well as identifying the employees that have vision for your business. This I feel is an empowering alternative to keeping employees boxed within the narrow confines of their compartmentalized functions. Choose a group of talented employees who are skilled at problem solving and give them a work-related challenge you're trying to solve. Let them analyze the situation and present solutions. The more they do this the stronger they become.
    You can take courses aplenty from a variety of providers including my own company. But what you need more than courses is the habit of continual reflection on what's happening in your business and in your life. This is what allows you to learn from everything you're doing the successes and the failures. Without this ability to look inward and learn from yourself you're going to struggle to meet the challenges of a growing business.
    I've never heard the term quality circles but I get the idea intuitively. And it's a good one! At Cognician we allow project teams to form around needs and to dissolve once the needs are fulfilled. Business functions work this way as well where teams will swarm around a requirement then disband once the outcome is achieved. This gives everyone the opportunity to push themselves beyond the boundaries of their experience and learn new things.
    Sorry that may have been a term I made up to describe what I meant...I too think it's a great way of working - making the most efficient use of time and giving employees variety in their work!
    @patrickkayton would you mind sharing a link to your company website please? I would be very intersted in persuing something like this as I'm sure other business owners would. I agree that it needs to become a habit but what better way to start than a course telling you how to? Would be much appreciated.
    As a business owner letting go is very difficult but it does not necessarily mean completely letting go. I believe in WORKING WITHEMPLOYEESin a team side by side and not employees WORKING FOR YOU. That way your EMPLOYEES becomeyour TEAMand the business owner a COACH like in sport. When I was an employee in asupervising role it was always easy to come up with new ideas or solutions for challenges because we all felt like we OWNED the business and our participation made us understand the importance of working hard. We had lots of FUN and were very PRODUCTIVE. It's a bit difficult to motivate people when they always get ordered around all the time. When I left a new boss came in and had a more authouritarian approach and they started losing key employees one after the other. Businessis about having fun and developing your team so they can be inspired not only to be better employees but motivated to start their own businesses and contribute to building a better South Africa. Lastly your employees are more likely to remain with you and grow your business if you empower them through training and let them contribute more etc. Replacing employees is very costly time consuming and a difficulty in finding trustworthy ones. So I am all for empowerment and letting go by way of working as a team with me at the reigns as all you will be doing is investing in the gowth of your business.
    As a leader you should empower your employees to work hard to take you business to the higher level. They should be able to work hard even if you are not around the office or you went overseas. Therefore for me what i do since we are still new in business i just scare them a little bit for like when someone is not participating in something we have arranged to do in like threee months i just tell the person that look if you are not seriouse about taking this business to the higher level consider your self as just being an employee in the company not becoiming one of the team management when this company grows. And after i scare them with those words i start seeeing them being active in the business bringing new ideas and showing that they are passionate about the company. They also show that they will do what it takes to make this company a success. I mean even if they have to help me financially they do help me because they know they not doing it for me but they doing it for the company and that makes them to become potential investors in the company therefore they are encouraged because they know they will benefit more in the future of this company.
    Hi Patrick i definetly agree with you on attending somelearing programmes to learn mangement skills. That is what i wasalso thinking about for some time now since imoffering security services and is an industry hard to find the a female leading it. Therefore im thinking to take security management skills at Unisa as part time in oder to improve my management skill and is also another way to empower my female employees that they can go far beyond with their work at the security industry. I also empower my employees to take extra classes in oder to get new skills and knowlegde to get higher positions in the comany since there are some certificates required for some positions as Being an supervisor or a manager on a cite.
    yes indeed as a leader is very important to know who are your strong back bones. The employees who take the company as their own those that want to help you reach the company's vision and mision. These are employees you can trust with the company's information and that they wont sell out your ideas to other companies. Therefore if theres a job that has to be done you can even appoint them to take control of everything and solve the problem by becoming with valuable solutions.
    The only way to do it is by taking courses relating to your business so depending on the type of industry you are in. If you are into security services like me go attend some security training and short courses for security management. Although im not sure what is the name of your industry but im thinking is about food since you are a chef so take curlnery courses. This applies to everyone in the simplybiz memebers do not study things that are not related to equpping your business . The course you take should be able to help you improve in your leadership skills.
    Empowering is all about that employess should take responsibility fo their own work. Therefore they should not be told what to do all the time but they shoud be only shown how to do the job some kind od scaffolding for youe employees therefore you empoer them to make own decisions this also make them to feel that their contibutions are valuable and this will empower them in the company.

    I feel that empowering people makes them happier, more fulfilled and productive..I feel that these are all important parts of a successful employee and thus company