7 Ways to Empower Leaders to Become Better Leaders
January 22, 2024
“A Great Leader is the One Who Makes Those Around Them Better.”
What is the simplest task we can do while ‘at work’? It goes without saying that the easiest course of action is to ask other people to complete our work or, more accurately, ‘delegate tasks’. No doubt, anyone can delegate tasks while sitting in a cabin, but is that really what ‘successful leadership’ looks like? There is more to it. Effective leaders have a significant influence on their team members as well as the organization.
Great leaders foster a culture of happiness, productivity, and organizational connection among their team members, all of which positively impact your company’s bottom line. One can use a variety of criteria to identify great leaders. However, the criteria that truly stands out, though, is how well the leader’s team members are growing into strong, capable future leaders.
A high-performing environment needs leaders who can continue the cycle of empowerment. They must promote a mentoring culture that helps team members develop the confidence required to take decisions or actions without unnecessary managerial supervision.
Empowering leadership is one of the best ways a leader can increase productivity and enhance employee retention. Developing oneself into a leader who inspires others is a journey that calls for constant learning, introspection, and growth. Empowerment creates a healthy, positive, and most importantly a successful culture where people trust leadership and take ownership of their vision.
How can leaders be empowered to become better leaders? Surely, there’s no magic potion that they can drink and evolve into one. Below are a few ways to empower leaders to become the greatest ‘leadership version’ of themselves.
1. Invest in Leadership Training
For leaders to successfully change their habits and behaviors, they require the appropriate resources, training, and support. It goes without saying that you cannot expect your leaders to go further in the absence of the necessary resources. In light of this, an organization must invest in training initiatives and offer learning opportunities to its leaders through online courses, workshops, webinars, podcasts, instructional materials, and books to help them adjust to their roles. This also enables leaders to advance their skills, broaden their knowledge, and realize their full potential.
2. Let the Leaders Be/ Allow the Leaders to Lead!
It’s best to let the leaders find solutions to their own problems. This gives them a sense of empowerment. Leading someone down a given road or demonstrating a certain approach could be misinterpreted as micromanagement. Their confidence and sense of control are boosted when they come up with creative, real-time solutions to the problems of their teammates.
3. Enhance Their Personal Values and Strengths
Gaining an understanding of the self-starting abilities and values of leaders will facilitate relationship building with them. It also offers a glimpse into their leadership style and approach towards professional development. For leaders to succeed both on individual and corporate levels, they must collaborate with their teams to implement these values. Give your leaders the freedom to identify their areas of strength and collaborate with them to address problems in the manner that best suits them.
4. Establish Expectations
Inform the leaders in a clear and concise manner of what is expected of them. To help them visualize the goals you have for them, set attainable targets with achievable measurements. In addition, a leader also needs to comprehend how they fit into the larger scheme of things that align with the vision of your organization. This also helps the leaders understand the significance of their roles and their ability to make a difference through their contributions.
5. Foster a Healthy Work Environment with Open Communication
At the organizational level, leaders can be supported in taking proactive actions to establish a healthy work environment by encouraging behavior based on integrity, honesty, and open communication. For open communication, it is necessary that both sides provide useful criticism and actively seek out new input. The capacity to share and listen is the foundation of open communication. Open communication between team members is essential for a positive exchange of ideas to take your organization forward.
6. Delegate Authority and Responsibility
Giving authority and responsibility to leaders is a critical step in their development and empowerment. Providing the authority and responsibility to decide for themselves and take actions that fall within the purview of a leader is called delegation. Leaders who are adept at delegating can develop their leadership style, problem-solving skills, and decision-making abilities. In addition, it also gives them confidence that the organization they work for trusts their abilities, values them, and respects them as leaders.
7. Recognition Works Wonders/The Magic of Recognition
They say that the deepest craving of human nature is the need to be appreciated. In a similar vein, the leaders are also motivated to do better next time if their efforts are appreciated. Recognizing their hard work encourages them to enhance their innovation, creativity, problem-solving abilities, and resourcefulness and brings out the visionary in them. Expressing appreciation, providing constructive feedback, and presenting rewards will inspire, engage, and drive leaders. This also boosts their morale and strengthens their belief in the organization.
Let the leaders analyze and introspect themselves about how far they have come and how far they can go as leaders!
Key Contributor: Geentanjali Negi, Senior Manager – Content/ Research & Sales Enablement