“People want guidance, not rhetoric. They need to know what the plan of action is and how it will be implemented. They want to be given responsibility to help solve the problem and the authority to act on it.” ~Howard Schultz, Starbucks
At the foundation of every successful organization is a cohesive team that comes together to bring the company’s vision and mission into reality. Smart leaders know that keeping the team united and empowered is important to achieve that success.
What are some of the best ways to empower your team, improve morale, expand the positive feelings of team, AND encourage individual development? Here are five ways to empower your team:
1. Effective Communication – Good leaders are able to communicate their vision, achieve team buy-in, and inspire all team members to productivity. How? Through productive meetings, effective internal/ external verbal and non-verbal communications, open door policies that enable all ideas and opinions to be heard, and consistent communication tools and skills that enable employees to become aware and discover the power of styles and the implications those styles can have on others. To promote a transparent atmosphere within a company, effective communication is a must. And yes, this is much easier said than done since communication is determined by the receiver.
“I know you believe you understand what you think I said, but I’m not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant. ~ Fritz Perls
So how can you engage all team members to build trust, show respect, work collaboratively, have synergy and think beyond departmental ‘silos‘ to increase productivity? Through monthly experiential team activities. Simple monthly 30-60 minute experiential exercises that allow participants to become aware of different styles and patterns by engaging the mind and body. Through implementing internal “awareness” activities, communication styles and language patterns can be observed, recognized and acknowledged to maximize communication effectiveness. This allows the focus to flow easily towards the larger goals and the importance that each member of the team and their contribution brings to the goal.
2. Give Them Permission – Does your team feel like they are able to contribute to projects, the company vision, and execution? Does leadership encourage employees to participate and share ideas? Employees want guidance for their career growth, and want leaders to assist them with their skills and personal development. Take a good look at the flow between employees and leadership. Ensure that team members have “permission” to share their ideas and expertise, and are able to question processes and how strategies are implemented, as they may have new ideas or concepts that can increase productivity. A great example is when a client who managed a department asked the team members if they had any ideas on how she could be more effective as their leader to give them quality individual time. One team member shared that instead of having an “open door” policy, which created inefficiency with many interruptions throughout the day, that she begin a “cone” policy. A cone placed outside her open door would let team members know to come back at a later time. This idea was implemented and it had a positive effect on the entire team.
3. Individual Breakthroughs Empower Teams – Self-Confidence. Personal Power. Success. These commanding words are critical elements to empower and inspire organizations and individuals to realize their full potential. Through a variety of techniques designed to facilitate self-empowerment and transformational breakthrough experiences, team members can bust through limiting beliefs and patterns. Transformational experiential activities enable participants to surpass their expectation of what they believe is possible, allowing them to achieve new levels of success. An example of this is our board-breaking seminars, that provide an opportunity to shatter self-imposed limitation and for those who chose to participate to harness their personal power. It begins with the participants writing their limiting beliefs and obstacles on a board. They are then each invited forward to step up and break through their boards. In one short session, the physical action of breaking the board and “breaking” the obstacles is achieved. The decisive action and success brings a release of negative emotions and starts to shift thought patterns that have been holding them back. An empowered individual brings that confidence to team dynamics.
4. Get the Team out of the office – Corporate retreats and team building activities and seminars are critical for employee morale, productivity, and enhancement of group dynamics. Teams all have ebb and flow; times of high creativity and occasional cycles of stagnation. Offering opportunities throughout the year for employee personal and professional growth not only makes your team stronger, but also gives you insight into how your team flows and may highlight areas that need work. According to Dr. Jim Loher, Co-founder and Vice President of Applied Science and Performance Psychology, the path to maximizing human capital isn’t better time management. It’s cultivating energy, then maintaining a laserlike focus on how you spend it to get what you want out of life.
5. Provide Challenges and Opportunities – Employees that are excited and engaged can increase the bottom line tremendously. Is your team challenged? Do they have opportunities for new development, ways to learn other positions or functions, and the chance for personal development? Have a team building day or corporate retreat that gets employees and leadership out of their comfort zones. Experiencing the team in different circumstances will reveal talents and potential that may not have been exposed in the office.
If you are interested in fun, effective communication, team building, breakthrough and empowerment experiences, Fire Power Seminars welcomes the opportunity to be part of your strategic planning. Our corporate retreats and training seminars are designed to leverage employee engagement to attain more productivity and greater results. Unlike most programs available in today’s business world, we offer powerful seminars that directly engage every participant, helping them recognize limiting mindsets and guiding them to creative alternatives. Contact us to customize a plan for your team!