Celarity Blog • Updated Aug 24, 2018
Empower Employees & Learn to Lead Without Authority
Every manager wants their employees to be happy, productive, and to feel a sense of purpose in their work. But sometimes, especially in larger companies, it can be too easy to let the top-down structure of authority come between you and your team. How can you ensure that you’re taken seriously as a leader while encouraging motivation, participation, and autonomy?
Here are 5 important tactics to help you empower employees and learn to lead without authority:
Give Your Employees a Voice
Employees don’t always feel that they have an opinion that matters in the workplace. If you’re looking to empower employees and for your team members to engage with you and provide you with honest feedback, you’re going to need to pay close attention:
- Listen intently and showcase warm body language
- Consult employees about ongoing projects, policies, and processes
- Take action and respond when you receive new information
Set Clear Boundaries & Expectations
Make sure your team knows what they can and cannot do without consulting you for next steps. Most employees appreciate having generous enough boundaries to allow them the freedom to act as they see fit in certain scenarios. Plus, it shows that you trust them enough to work autonomously.
At the same time, help your team members understand the expectations you have for them. Put expectations and boundaries into place before any issues arise around commitments, timing, and/or compliance.
Encourage Career Development & Growth
One of the best ways to motivate your team and encourage employee empowerment is to take an interest in their career development and growth. Inspire creative thinking and provide opportunities for employees to:
- Learn new skills within the office
- Showcase special talents
- Share innovative solutions
- Attend conferences, events, and training outside of the office
Practice Showing Your Appreciation
Showing appreciation doesn’t always have to be a grand gesture in front of your entire team. Of course, there are times when that sort of appreciation makes sense – but, showing appreciation on a daily basis in small ways can lead to high-quality work and better overall job satisfaction. Letting your team members know that you think they’re contributing great work will help empower employees and allow them see that the time and effort they are putting into their projects is noticed and acknowledged.
Sometimes your employees will need you to be understanding and flexible. When you recognize that a team member has new or additional needs due to life circumstances, work closely with them to find a solution and help them out. You will show them that you not only empathize with their situation but that you care about more than the work they can do for your team. The rest of your team members will take note and be more likely to voice their needs, engage with the team, and perhaps, be more motivated to continue providing their best work for the long-term.
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