How do you empower your team? Here are 5 ways you can energize those who serve with you…
1 – Pray for them and over them. Your prayers will help pour back into them what their jobs are taking out. Pray for their spouses, their kids, for strength, wisdom, creativity and more. While you are at it, let them hear you praise God for bringing them into your life and for all they bring to the team!
2 – Celebrate them! People like to know they count. Everyone needs to hear that who they are and what they do matters and is making a difference. Make it visible, make it vocal and make it part of a greater climate of gratitude that will spread and motivate others to do the same.
3 – Time out. While giving everyone a raise or a new iPad may not be feasible, giving your team members some strategic afternoons, or mornings, or more off, is. Give them some notice so they can plan and take advantage of the time. If they need to work from home, fine. Besides, productivity is more important than punching the clock. Especially after a big initiative or event, give them time to recover and rejuvenate.
4 – Equip for success. Often we don’t set our team up with any, let alone the right tools. This is equivalent to sending a hitter to the plate without a bat. Before assigning a project ask whether or not they have the tools necessary to really knock it out of the park. If not, then actively seek those resources and then give them the “swing away” sign.
5 – Listen… and learn from them. Nothing says, “You’re important!” like silence. If you must speak, ask an open-ended question that will encourage them to dig deeper and share more. Listen for what your team is saying, and not saying about where they are at as people, spouses, parents, as well as leaders. And, resist the tendency to put what they have said in your own context. Let them speak and create a culture of value through listening.
Bonus Tip: Surprise everyone. Toss the agenda and just have fun every once in a while!
These strategies should be seen as part of a culture you create and not a quick list you check off. Be intentional about empowering your team and you will become better people, better leaders and partner to accomplish greater things!