Leadership authorities say empowerment is a critical leadership skill today. From LERN’s UGotClass on Leadership Development last month, here’s dialogue that delves into why empowerment is so important for your lifelong learning program and your leadership right now.
A leader believes in the potential of each of the individuals, and is intentional about their individual development. Connected to this, the leader empowers each member of the group/organization to be and do their best.
Sandra, thanks for bringing up empowerment. Most leadership authorities and authors see empowerment as either key or the primary way that both leaders and organizations become successful today.
I don’t think “empowerment” has been a concept and practice that has always been seen as central; but in the last ten years it sure has.
What do you feel is the cause of this?
Great question Matt. Really great question. I think it goes to the destruction of the organizational pyramid of the last century. Note: we all know what an organizational pyramid it looks like and what it means. But 100 years ago they had to describe what it was.
And what the research shows is that a network organizational structure, what people used to call “flat organizations” is actually superior in terms of communication, information and making the right decisions faster.
To do that, one has to empower people. It’s the only way. So I think leadership authorities are correct in highlighting empowerment of workers now.
And as a future or emerging leader, you should be aware of this dynamic going on from pyramid to network organizational structure.
Management expert Jennifer Selke of Berkeley, California, adds, “Supervisors can account for up to 76% of the variance in their staff members’ engagement.” Selke will be doing a new session, “Being a Great Manager,” at the big LERN Annual Conference in Savannah Nov. 6-9, 2018.
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