Introduction: Unlike some other workplace initiatives over the past 40 years, empowerment is not a fad. Empowerment, at its core, is about the control we believe we have at work over what we do, and how we do it. Recent research suggests that empowerment is composed of these four components: meaning (do we identify and support what we are doing at work); impact (do we have the ability to influence goals and colleagues); self-determination (can we make decisions independently without layers of approval); and competence (do we believe in our own abilities as applied at work). When these four components are rated high, and so employees feel ‘empowered’, the research is clear: better team performance; lower employee turnover; higher customer satisfaction and loyalty; more employee engagement; and ultimately, better organizational results. Without question, empowerment is a key to a better workplace, a better experience at work, and better outcomes.
Presentation Description: This three hour session explores the workplace dynamic known as “empowerment”. It begins with a reflection on participants’ own experience with a “best boss” and how this related to being ‘empowered’ at work. Brief research is then shared to define the concept, its measureable components, the effects of empowerment as shown through various empirical studies, and the strategies firms have used to increase employees’ feelings of empowerment. Following this, practical ideas are shared; participants have the opportunity to relate strategies they have used; a terrific video featuring Peter Block (renowned expert and author on empowerment) sharing ideas on empowerment is shown; and ways to measure and promote empowerment are then reviewed and discussed.
Learning Outcomes: Participants in this three hour workshop on empowerment will:
- Relate personally to their experiences of being empowered
- Learn definitions of workplace empowerment
- Review briefly research and best practices on empowerment
- Learn various practical strategies managers can use to facilitate empowerment
- Develop actions they can take to foster empowerment with their colleagues/teams