An effective leader is someone who empowers followers to make visions into reality.
Leading is a responsibility, and the effectiveness of this responsibility is reflected in the attitude of those being led. These attitudes consist of four dimensions which make up empowerment.
I’ve extracted a few key points from one of my favourite books ‘Leaders – by Warren G Bennis & Burt Nanus’, that clarifies this subject whigh can provide you with the key points that you need to pay attention to when evaluating your effectiveness as a leader.
When people feel that they are making a difference in the organisation or the outside world (in most cases customers). Effective leaders are able to create a vision that gives followers the feeling of being at the heart of things and that what they do has effect on somebody or something. In short, that they are in some way significant. Being able to create a compelling vision and communicating it along with communicating each person’s role in making that vision into reality are key here.
Meaning development and learning on the job. The feeling that you are learning something, gaining mastery over your job and improving your performance. Employee growth/training programs, regular feedback are key here.
A feeling of family, joined in some common purpose. This doesn’t necessarily mean liking one another, but rather a sense of reliance on one another toward a common cause.
۴- Enjoyment or fun:
Through empowerment workers seem to get so immersed in their game of work that they forget basic needs for long periods of time. This fun doesn’t mean playing foosball in the office, but rather from enjoyment of doing the work itself. See here for more on this.
For the third and fourth one its easy to identify an environment with these qualities, but a bit harder to consciously create. In my experience this can be done through providing a desirable vision, focusing on performance goals and creating a collegial environment of trust and cooperation.
I would love to hear your opinions on these subjects and your ideas on how we can improve ourselves as leaders.