Strong leadership and healthy workplace relationships are key to job satisfaction. Job satisfaction impacts company culture and empowers employees to contribute individually and collectively to your business goals. Empowered employees are a driving force behind ‘The Best Places to Work‘ and industry growth.
This makes it even more important for leaders to focus on how they engage and empower their teams.
The best leaders respect and value each team member. They understand it is their job to equip their teams to use their gifts and abilities to make the company better. The most successful founders and CEOs respect each member and inspire them to do good work. As a result, employees feel valued and appreciated.
Leaders who plan to scale understand they have to engage the best thinking of each team member. They advocate the use of collective talents to bring about results.
So, what can leaders do to empower their teams? Here’s a look at four key steps:
1. Use company retreats to communicate vision and direction
Leaders should share the vision and direction of the company with employees and involve employees in decisions on matters that affect their work.
A good way to do this is to hold a company retreat. This is the perfect setting to share the vision and a compelling call to action for the future. When the team is together, outside of the office, they can focus on and embrace the value of what they do and why. Many leaders prefer to meet with team members one-on-one rather than in groups, but effective leaders spend time in groups.
In order for leaders to be effective, they can’t neglect the importance of a team environment and dynamics. Leaders who want to develop their people unearth opportunities to bring them together and talk about vision, mission, goals, responsibilities and core values.
When groups discuss concepts together, it produces accountability and motivation for the entire team. Employees work better when they understand what each member contributes to the team and wider goals.
2. Empower employees to take ownership and make key decisions
Great leaders give their teams both power and authority to make decisions, carry them out, and manage outcomes.
“Great leaders give their teams both power and authority to make decisions, carry them out, and manage outcomes.”
As leaders release power it enables their teams to do more than expected. It is never easy to release control, especially in areas that are mission critical to a company’s success. Nevertheless, employees need opportunities to make a difference, succeed, and grow.
Empowerment delivers inspiration and ownership to organizations. A wise and capable leader knows when and how to step back so their people can step forward and accomplish the purpose and mission. Delegate authority, not just work.
3. Convey confidence and trust in individual abilities
Exceptional leaders believe in their teams before individuals believe in themselves. Leaders see potential, where others only see the performance.
It’s the primary responsibility of leaders to evaluate the gifts, talents, and potential of their employees. Much better outcomes are obtained when leaders know their people and understand how to help them achieve maximum impact.
As a result, leaders shift from managing projects to leading people–an important step in team development and leadership growth.
4. Share clear expectations and responsibilities with every team member
Clarity is the pathway to dependable results, and it isn’t always in ample supply.
Unclear goals are a major stressor in the workplace. “If things are foggy or ambiguous on our way to success, any actions we take will require more time and resources, or may fail altogether. Especially if we’re not sure where we’re going,” according to Fierce, Inc. “Clarity matters. Each small clarity problem within an organization may seem insignificant at first, but gradually, they lead to big problems.”
“Exceptional leaders leave no uncertainties in their directions.”
Leaders who reveal—with clarity—responsibilities, expectations, and authentic values help their team members make better decisions that align with desired business outcomes. Exceptional leaders leave no uncertainties in their directions.
When a leader has clarity and communicates effectively, everything in the organization becomes crystal clear.
Leaders who wish to lead well are intentional about building and strengthening the right team. When that happens companies succeed, and team members excel.
Ken Gosnell is the CEO and Servant Leader of CXP (CEO Experience). He serves leaders by helping them to have great experiences that both transform them and their organizations that enable to go further faster. He has worked with hundreds of CEOs and leadership teams to enhance strategic, operational and people accomplishments. He is an author, coach, and strategic partner with CEOs. Ken is the creator and facilitator of the Christian CEO Linkedin Group and creator of the CEO Experience Impact Assessment. He is married to Shonda, and they have four children.