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People empowerment in organizations, is a practice that is both embraced and feared. Embraced, in a world that is constantly changing and feared when boundaries are crossed. There have been a number of research studies that have positively linked empowerment with increased team performance.
According to a study, organizations which practice employee empowerment have 50% higher degree of customer loyalty. Another research by Pepperdine University, suggested a clear relation between people empowerment and financial success.
Many factors contribute to organizations yielding the benefits of people empowerment. Here we will look at some of the aspects:
“Ask not……Ask what you can do for your country” – JFK. Although, most people empowerment literature begins with organizational or leadership perspectives, here we would like to begin with team members themselves. People need to have the empowered spirit and know that they have the power to perform and take the organization ahead. This enables all the people empowerment efforts worthwhile.
Although, its upto the people in the organization to execute the responsibility given through empowerment, a leaders’ role is vital here as well. Empowerment, begins with power sharing by the leaders, where they make their people feel trusted and valued. It’s important not to lock people up in box, through micromanagement that restricts them from spontaneity and creativity both of which are required in todays’ VUCA world.
People empowerment, that gives independence in tasks, works well when there is interdependence. When interdependence lacks, in a team with increased autonomy, the team performance is reduced.
There has to be an agreement made between the team members and the leaders inorder, to set boundaries, finalize training plans etc that will make the people empowerment process work.
When done in the right manner, people empowerment, enables leaders with more time for critical business aspects and motivated team members.