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Any business that has employees knows that there is a balance that needs to be struck in order to keep business moving while making employees feel valued and respected. Employee empowerment is becoming an increasingly important topic as employers strive to be relevant and attractive to potential hires. But what is employee empowerment? Simply put, it refers to employees having a measure of independence and freedom in their day-to-day professional tasks. Many people call it autonomy. And many employers say that it increases team morale as well as productivity and employee retention.

Autonomy

Autonomy and employee empowerment are very closely related. The reason these two terms are not interchangeable is because autonomy means total self-control. Employee empowerment does not give employees total sovereignty. There are still goals that the business needs to hit, there are still procedures and parameters that need to be considered and implemented. With this in mind, employee empowerment allows employees to have autonomy within a set of defined boundaries. Employees may have less oversight, more say in procedures, creating systems and more. Empower your team with ServiceNow HR to see what a difference it can make in your business. 

Benefits

There are lots of good things that employee empowerment can bring your business. One of the more notable benefits being improving your potential hire pool. When you work for someone else, it helps to feel like you are more than just an employee and that you are not going to be controlled for 40 hours every week. Since so much of our lives are spent working, it helps to feel like an individual with a voice, valuable ideas and a personality within your workplace. When potential employees know that they will have a measure of freedom, they are more likely to pick your business to give their talents to.

Productivity is another awesome side effect. Because tasks are not typically mandated and monitored with an iron fist, employees feel freer and less pressured. They can arrange their schedule as they see fit to get to a desired end. Employee empowerment also tends to redistribute tasks more broadly so that more minds are able to tackle certain issues.

Requirements

In order for employee empowerment to be successful, there are a few key things that cannot be overlooked. As an employer it is paramount that you properly train your employees. Whether it is through onboarding or routine development days, training is a must to ensure that extra responsibilities can be handled. Employees will also need to have access to the information necessary to complete tasks. A significant amount of time and effort will be needed to create the kind of mutual trust that is necessary for this system to work.

Employee empowerment and autonomy do share a very strong bond. The former is autonomy for the workplace. It can make the difference in a fun and energetic workplace and one where employees can all agree, “I’m just here for the paycheck.”

By Erica Buteau

Change Agent. Daydream Believer. Maker. Creative. Likes love, peace and Jeeping. Dislikes winter, paper cuts and war. She/Her/Hers.

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