An organisation is only as good as its employees, justifying the amount of money companies spend on their employees. In addition to money, employees need empowerment to help steer the company towards its goals. Employee empowerment happens in stages and gives staff members the power to play a role in shaping an organisations future. It gives them a platform to give ideas and challenge decisions they believe do not work in favor of the company. Additionally, it motivates employees and helps them appreciate and respect their work more.
Prepare questionnaires to evaluate employees’ attitude towards work and areas they feel you can allow them more decision making power. Allow your employees to complete the survey anonymously so they can give honest responses. This ensures that the empowerment process is employee-driven and that the staff begins to own the process in its early stages.
Create forums to share information on empowerment with staff members. Invite guest speakers to explain the concept and invite questions from employees. Additionally, take advantage of the forums to stress ways employees will benefit from empowerment and the roles they will take up in the company’s decisions making process.
Create structures that include employees in decision-making processes. For example, invite them to management meetings and present changes to them for evaluation before implementation. Take note of their input and act on it so they also appreciate the fact that you value their input.
Create open communication channels. For example, do not limit employee to access managers; implement an open door policy where everybody has access to managers’ offices. Additionally, create frequent forums to encourage employees to open up. Discourage supervisors and managers from shooting down employees; rather encourage them to invite their input and only dismiss it with reasonable cause.
Share decision-making roles amongst your team. Invite your managers to share decision-making responsibilities in their departments and communicate these changes. Once employees start making decisions, endorse their decisions and only interfere when you need to guide them to remain within set principles. Encourage everyone to think in an open-minded manner and reward excellence whenever it is due. It will challenge employees to take on a more active role in their work improving productivity.
Feedback helps you assess the effectiveness of the empowerment program. Create a continuous feedback channel to encourage continuous communication within different decision-making fronts. You can create a suggestion box or have a laid-back meeting where everyone speaks freely and encourage honest feedback.
Employee empowerment takes time and changes that you cannot implement at straight away. Drastic changes may be too fast for the team to cope; create an actionable plan with set goals that you accomplish together as a team progressively. Additionally, create a system to distribute decision-making powers that everybody understands and respects. Detail each power and its effect on the overall running of the organisation.
Employee empowerment works best when the staff understands the consequences each decision-making power holds. Have supervisors and managers oversee decision-making and guiding the staff towards achieving the larger mission and vision of the organisation.