Times have changed and during these uncertain times, employee engagement may be experiencing some fluctuation. A lot of employees will feel disconnected with their work and the constant changes they have to adjust to. It's important to emphasise with your team during these challenging times and enable your employees to comfortably grow and continue to excel, even during these challenging times. But how can you do this? A start is to empower your team and give them the confidence they need to succeed. 

What is employee empowerment? Good question! Employee empowerment refers to how companies provide their employees with the right tools and resources to succeed with anything and everything they need. The feeling of empowerment ensures employees engage with their work, increasing output and productivity. This has been supported by a study of more than 7,000 employees which showed that those who felt disempowered were rated at the 24th percentile of engagement while those with a high level of empowerment came in at the 79th percentile. It goes much further than a simple resource allocation, however. To truly empower your workforce, you must put in the time to make it a true cultural change within your organisation. 

This starts by: giving your employees a voice and regularly soliciting feedback and providing actions on such feedback, provide opportunities for employees to work autonomously and increase responsibilities, recognise employees frequently to increase their engagement and provide employees with the tools, training and authority to excel in their roles. Company leaders, HR professionals and fellow team members all need to collaboratively play key roles in establishing a supportive and empowered environment and it starts by implementing these changes. 

The benefits of employee empowerment are very clear and can develop a greater trust in leadership, encourage employee motivation, lead to greater creativity and improve employee retention; ultimately resulting in a better bottom line. One of the most important things for many businesses, especially right now, is the idea of creating greater trust in the people that are leading them. Leaders who empower their employees are more likely to be trusted than those that do not. However, this does not mean that empowering your employees means giving them the work you don't want to do. It is about supporting your employees and acting as a coach, pushing and leading them in the right direction to better themselves. By creating a culture of trust in your team, employees are more likely to be productive, engaged and work harder to achieve team objectives. 

Creating a culture of empowerment is no easy feat, however and takes a lot of careful consideration. Listening and recognising your employees is a great start, but you must begin to do them daily and without question to truly see a change in your organisation. Leaders must understand that to truly empower someone, they must find ways to support them, not the reverse. Everyone in your organisation should feel empowered, beginning in HR, through to your managers and leadership, to your employees. To ensure your team feels empowered throughout, create new initiatives, team exercises and mentoring circles to continue fostering a real cultural change with your organisation. By doing this, you will have greater success and have a team that feels ready for anything and everything - even a global pandemic! 

Empowering your employees starts from the bottom and works its way to the top, thus creating a culture of empowerment in your workforce. It is crucial that leaders understand the importance of empowerment and how it can ultimately boost the bottom line of your business and create greater results. If you have a bottom line that feels empowered and are confident in themselves and their leader, the feeling resonates throughout the whole workforce and creates a balance. Make sure that you're taking the right steps to empower your team during these uncertain times and you will be a step ahead of your competitors.