1/27/12

Empowerment

Launch Series (Part 13)


If you want your launch to be successful, you must empower people who are connected to the launch initiative in any way. Yes, it takes a bit of a leap of faith, there are risks and it is not always perfect. You have done it before and you have experienced it yourself. Empowerment is where we grow, do things we did not think we could do, where we overcome our fears, test ourselves and find out that we really do have what it takes. It is also what often brings the greatest attention, accolades and, most importantly, new opportunities.

While there are many stories, fables and faith teachings based on empowerment met and achieved, a simple example may be in your memories. Think back to either when you were a child yourself or when you were helping a child and took the training wheels off of their bicycle the first time. If you were the child, even if you did not stay up very long, you felt a thrill, an excitement and the freedom of doing something under your own power, control and dreams of what you would do with now that you were empowered.

If you were the person teaching the child, after the bit of a run and guidance of the bike, seeing the child take off, once you released the rider your guidance brought a sense of pride and knowledge that you had helped to launch a whole new world for that child. The newly empowered freedom did not take them out of your world but defined what you could do together on a new level.

In business, there is little more exciting than seeing people bloom and grow. Realization of empowered ability to reach for dreams, accomplish goals and be a part of your growth. Just like the child learning to ride the bike, your guidance and responsibilities do not end with the first point of empowerment. Actually, it is quite the opposite. Each person you work with or touch and empower through your initiatives looks to you as the leader to put out the next challenge, empower them again in a new way, open new horizons, and experience success through the challenge.

Launching an initiative and using empowerment as a tool, your own power and even control are actualized. You are opening the opportunity, challenging people to grow in their strengths and discover strengths they did not know they had. You still have the vision and power of alignment which is where you gain control, even though those empowered do not feel controlled because they are experiencing growth and the momentum that comes with the launch of an initiative.

The challenge comes in never capping your own dreams and empowering yourself as well as being empowered by others. A company begins to stagnate and in some cases begins a path to demise when the leadership stops dreaming, reaching and empowering. There are many examples that come to mind especially in the technology world where thought leaders and entrepreneurs such as the founders or Google, Apple, Microsoft, Amazon and a host of other were begun in a humble environment without money or other elements considered necessary for success. Each one of these had a vision, were able to empower others to see the vision, empower the use of talents and skills to beat the odds and often work not for what they earned that day but for the meeting of the challenge which always has a stronger, more meaningful reward.

Empowerment is also one of the strongest recruiting and retention tools in our arsenal. People who are driving toward a mission, have the ability to achieve and succeed more than they can as an individual and are a part of a culture of empowerment rarely leave and are not enticed easily.

When you consider a launch, empowering your people and taking off the training wheels, yes, you have to let go a bit. However if the path and the destination are yours and they know that they will ride together with you to new places, you have a relationship that is empowered and near limitless in what can be achieved.

17 comments:

Carter Architecture said...

Empowerment examples like "Take off the training wheels and trust your abilities" are great. Many times the word empowerment is used but the actions don't match.

Mallie Dein said...

Empowerment is a word that has been bastardized and misconstrued in the media and in many an entrepreneur's overall view. It's great to see someone get down to the nitty gritty realism of the term and its focus.

Pat Soltys said...

Thank you Carter and Mallie for your comments.

Paul Morin said...

Excellent post, Pat. I agree that empowerment is important. It's particularly important in entrepreneurial ventures. Too many entrepreneurs try to do everything themselves and never become comfortable with letting go of a bit of control. Such controlling behavior really limits how much the venture and the entrepreneur can grow.

Dorien said...

Great post. Empowering people is what makes them even greater! They feel better, perform better and ultimately help you do better.

Gem L Thompson said...

Couldn't agree more - will be sharing this as I would love to see every business have this as one of their core values!

Gem L Thompson said...

Couldn't agree more - will be sharing this as I would love to see every business have this as one of their core values!

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