Empowered employees can be creative, initiative, innovative, and can come up with efficient and effective ways to solve problems. Employee empowerment can change the standard procedures that are hectic and can save a lot of time as well as energy. For instance, if customers come across any issue regarding the product or service provided by the organization an empowered employee will solve the issue within minutes without needing permission. However, if a similar issue is encountered by an employee that is not empowered, he/she will have to go through a tiring system that is not even necessary most of the time to get simple permission. This will not only irritate the employee but also the customer and put a lot of load on the management as well.
But providing empowerment means giving them the control and things can get out of hands if not handled properly. Below are a number of guidelines that will help one maintain the thin line balance between employee empowerment and proper management:
Tell Them The Vision
Telling them the vision will make them know that they are more important to the organization. People when working tend to know that they are an important part of the process. When one does tell them the core values of the business they tend to work more enthusiastically.
Also, when doing the job, one must know what and why the job is being done in the first place? Knowing that the goal of the organization is not to make a profit only but above that can bring in more sincerity.
Boundaries Should Be Generous
Before the employees start the job make sure that they are educated properly. From the ‘yes and no’ of the work routine to the ‘yes and no’ of the work environment.
From the beginning when they know their limitations they will act cautiously, and the possibilities of error will be minimum.
However, the boundaries should be generous. Give them enough boundaries in which he/she can make their own decisions. This freedom of action can develop a relationship of trust in organizational members. (Kasanoff, 2016)
Listen To Employees
An important feature of employee empowerment is being listened to. One needs to listen to employees. Call in a meeting every few days and ask them about their opinion for an ongoing official issue. When they know that they are being listened to they will automatically feel empowered and important.
Give Them Rewards
Credit them for their valuable ideas not just privately but also publicly. They deserve appreciation. One can give them a raise in salary, bonus or even a little vacation, etc.
Providing them appreciation can also be symbolic. For instance, use little tools such as lanyards, cups, pens et cetera. Use custom lanyards or printed lanyards for appreciations. These little things can make a big difference. Different color lanyards can be symbolic of different rewards for employees for their efforts. 4inlanyards specialize in such tools. The lanyards they provide are custom made, in variety, affordable, and have the rush delivery guarantee.
Give Honest Feedback
For employee growth and development honest feedback is very necessary. Say in an organization an employee A is not performing well and the manager of the department provides feedback that is not very honest believing that it will affect employee empowerment. A does not change the performance and continue to waste or wrongfully utilize organizations’ resources. At the end of the day, all the damage is done to the organization and the employee did not show growth as well.
On the other hand, if the same manager had given A brutal but honest review will it not save resources and time? Along with better growth of A?
Feedback is sometimes very necessary for not just the management but the employees as well.
Make Little Talk With Them
Do not shy away from a little chit chat with employees. From the office to cigarette break talk to them about little things. Ask them about how their life has been going or what problems are they facing? Ask about little projects they are working on?
This helps eliminate communication barriers among employees. Employees will then be more open in the end. It helps improve the quality of work. Employees normally shy away from asking about every little problem because they don’t want to create problems. But when they know that the workplace is friendly and supports a positive environment, they will then consult one more about the problems they are facing.
Create a Work-life Balance
Give them a break sometimes. They are human beings and they will only work efficiently if they are well rested and have a peaceful mind. Provide them the necessary holidays or flexible hours so that they do not get too much worked up.
Leadership that takes are of the work-life balance of employees gains more productivity and loyalty.
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