Middle Management is the Missing Link: It is time to shift to empowerment.
To genuinely liberate your employees, you must first liberate your middle management. True empowerment requires physically giving up part of your authority. There is no other way to give your staff the responsibility, power, and independence they need to create a more significant impact and do more. The past bureaucrats, intermediaries, and micromanagers have evolved into today’s influencers, connectors, and decision-makers. The first step toward empowerment is relinquishing control at the top, investing in the center, and enjoying dividends from the bottom up.
Often, empowerment is a euphemism for accomplishing more or accepting more responsibility without addressing the terrible burden of work. Four of five Australians suffer from burnout, characterized by feeling “exhausted” after each workday. Employee empowerment is “the act of providing authority to someone,” and the most significant “someone” is your B-Suite executives. Even the most enthusiastic employee may have a confidence crisis when deciding or assuming responsibility for something new and unknown. Burnout dulls the mind, making the idea of making further judgments unappealing rather than appealing. If you fail to empower your staff, they will be undermined and cling to their authority, sabotaging your attempts to empower them.