Top 10 Leadership Blunders: #3

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Top 10 Leadership Blunders: #3

Encourager-In-Chief: November 13th, 2019

Not empowering your people.

Last week we talked about authorizing employees. That is when you let everyone in your organization know that they have been authorized to act on your behalf. So how does this differ from empowerment? Empowerment has more to do with allowing individuals to make decisions without checking back with you. The best way to create empowerment is by setting the parameters in which they may freely do their job.

For example, I recently asked one of my ultimate service providers to head up our annual celebration night. One of the duties the committee handles is selecting a gift to be purchased and given away to all those attending the function. I also explained to her what the budget was for the gifts. In this particular case, I was out of state and I got a call from the committee head. She said she had found some really nice nametags that could be engraved and which were well within the allotted budget for this item. She asked me if it would be okay to get them. I said, “why are you asking me? This is your decision. I’ve already given you the guidelines and you are working within them. You don’t need to check with me on this. Make a decision and I will back you up.”

The following week when the event took place, everyone raved about the beautifully engraved nametags. They were a hit and so was the coordinator who had the courage to make a decision and go with what she felt was the best decision. It was a direct deposit into her self confidence and self-esteem bank.

The best way to empower people is to provide them the parameters in which they may perform their job. This might include work hours, access to specific files or items, spending budgets, as well as decision-making within the parameters to which you’ve already agreed.

One of the best feelings a leader ever experiences is when he sees someone he has empowered to do a job do it well knowing they can depend on their own decisions, without having to check back with his or her leader for every little detail. By the way, it will also let the people you report to know that you are growing as an inspired leader.

Create autonomy through boundaries.
- Ken Blanchard

This excerpt is taken from my Leading with Integrity seminar.

Inspired Leadership V: Leading With Integrity


I encourage you to order my Become a Leader Worth Following audio program, which also covers this lesson in much greater detail.

Become a Leader Worth Following


Let me hear from you!