Employee Empowerment Definition

The workplace is in a constant state of evolution. The old ways of a top down approach in an organization are almost extinct. Nowadays, employees want to explore their talents and test their limits without negative interference from their bosses. Any interference that impedes their ambition may cause them to quit.

This kind of scenario is even worse when you lose such highly productive labor to your competitors. Therefore, it is now necessary for employers to create avenues for employee empowerment within their organisation. Unfortunately, this is still an evolving concept that many employers do not fully grasp. Here is what you should know about employee empowerment.

What Is Employee Empowerment?

Employee empowerment is a managerial concept that allows non-managerial staff to make and implement certain decisions without prior consultation with their bosses. This may sound complicated but it is quite simple. You just allow your employees to work without bureaucratic hurdles that would stifle their creativity.

However, you should do this in a controlled environment that still allows you to monitor and access their without interjecting unnecessarily every now and then. A few months of implementing employee empowerment strategies at your organization will prove to you that this managerial model works. In fact, it leads to greater productivity, enhanced efficiency and an increased level of work satisfaction for your employees. Here are some key components of this managerial model.

An Effective Communication System

As mentioned earlier, employee empowerment requires greater level of autonomy for your employees but this does not mean that they should not be accountable to you. Rather, it means that they should communicate their ideas more freely to their bosses so that their bosses can understand what they are planning and why.

This will put the management team at ease and it will provide employees with an opportunity of receiving feedback on their intended projects or plans. Moreover, an effective communication system needs to exist among employees. This will help them to work together as a team and to pull their efforts in a coordinated fashion for the good of the organization.

 A Reward System for Self-Improvement

Many companies have reward systems for induced improvement i.e. positively rewarding employees for achieving benchmarks set by the company. However, only a few companies realise the importance of setting up a reward system for self-improvement. This is quite unfortunate because rewards for self-improvement are actually more effective than rewards for induced improvement.

This is because self-improvement comes from the heart of your employees and they will carry on with it regardless of any possible rewards in future. You need to show them that you recognise their self less efforts and that you support these efforts. This will encourage other employees to pursue self-improvement drives that will eventually culminate in greater productivity for your organisation or department.

Clearly Defined Roles within the Organization

Employee empowerment is more or less like allowing your employees to move in a certain direction without having to look over their shoulders for your approval. In this case, the most important part of employee empowerment is the direction they take or more accurately, the role they play.

To put it differently, employees will step on each other’s toes without clearly defined roles. They need to grow in an upward direction but within the parameters defined by their roles. This will prevent any future conflict among employees or conflict between employees and their managers.

An Adequate Level of Support

No system or person in this world can exist, grow and prosper without an adequate level of support. Your employees are no exception. They will need your input in terms of advice, positive criticism and access to certain resources that you control. This support base will allow them to feel empowered and in turn, they will empower others around them. Do not deny them this critical aspect of employee empowerment. Truly, all employees are in need of it.

Now you know what employee empowerment is. You also know the various components of employee empowerment. Go on. Implement it in your organization. Remember, the workplace is in a constant state of evolution. You should not lag behind.

Jason Silberman
Jason is the former Lead Author & Editor of TrainingStation Blog
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