Values and Leadership Newsletter
Food for Thought |October 2019
Leaders are not meant to be completely autonomous. We do not have to do everything on our own. Being an effective leader involves leading your team and empowering them to contribute. Over the years we have begun to see a shift in workplace culture toward a more collaborative environment. One that encourages employees to ask questions, explore new possibilities and find solutions. As a result of this shift, workplaces are seeing deeper levels of commitment and less employee turnover.
However, empowerment is not just about increasing productivity. We all want to feel valued and that does not change at work. When employees feel stifled and undervalued, everything suffers, including the mission. Empowering your team means listening to their needs, supporting and encouraging them and providing them with what they need to do their best. Author and motivational speaker, Simon Sinek said, “Leadership is about empowering others to achieve things they did not think possible.”
Empowerment involves getting to know your team as individuals, encouraging dialogue and providing them with the tools they need to be the best they can be. It is much more than "getting people together to shoot foam balls at one another."
“Jesus called his twelve disciples to him and gave them authority…” (Matthew 10:1). Jesus demonstrated that leadership is not a solo act. Not because He couldn’t, but because He saw value in equipping others to become leaders.
It can be difficult to share responsibility. Sometimes it even seems easier to do everything yourself. However, when you empower your team you will “go from being a good leader to an extraordinary one.”
People want to feel valued. They want to feel connected to the bigger picture. When leaders invest time, energy and resources in their employees it provides a deeper sense of purpose in the workplace.
Empowering others involves more than giving them tools to do a job. It involves creating a culture of trust, authenticity and respect. “A team of empowered leaders all rowing in the same direction is hard to beat.”
From our shelves …
How do you inspire commitment to the mission of the organization? How do you foster trust with your team? In his book, Leaders Eat Last, Sinek explores what it means to build a culture that encourages and empowers their employees to act independently, think creatively and take risks. When people feel inspired by their work they will experience a deeper sense of fulfillment.
Leaders Eat Last
Penguin Business (2017)
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