Oct 20th, 2020



  Written by: Jesse LaDousa, Chief Operating Officer

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Last week, we talked about how to empower your teams by building trust within your organization. Team empowerment is crucial to creating a great culture and environment at your company. This week I’d like to focus a layer deeper – empowering individual employees.

You’ve likely gone to great lengths to ensure you find and hire the right people for your company. Uncountable numbers of resumes and LinkedIn profile views, hundreds of initial candidate screenings and dozens of interviews – finally finding the right people to fill the critical roles on your teams. Knowing this process is arduous, once you do find the right team it’s imperative that you build a culture that rewards them, gives them opportunity for advancement, and makes them feel like they are key contributors to the success of the organization.

In short, you need to empower each individual in the organization regardless of their position, tenure, or experience level. Many companies use the Rewards & Punishments method (i.e. carrot and stick) to try and motivate employees. Do something good, get more money. Do something wrong, get punished. While used for centuries, this method doesn’t create the culture of empowerment we are after. Instead, we must look at what truly motivates individuals to want to perform their best.

In Daniel Pink’s book Drive, he states that once we take fair pay out of the equation three key factors drive employees to do their best work:

  • Autonomy – the desire to control what, when, and how we work.
  • Mastery – the desire to get better at something that matters.
  • Purpose – the desire to do work in the service of something bigger than ourselves.

Similar to the focus of my last article, I would say that trust plays a huge role in achieving the implementation of these concepts. You must trust that your employees are in search of the three factors above and give them the opportunity to achieve them. Talk to them individually, understand their personal situations, understand their goals and motivations, and then look for ways to help them achieve and grow.

Are you providing your employees the flexibility to work in spaces or locations that they are most comfortable in – therefore producing higher performance? Are individuals getting the right type of work to challenge them and help them towards mastery? Have you clearly articulated the goals and objectives of your company’s vision so that each employee knows exactly how they are personally contributing?

There are many ways in which we can create a company culture that empowers employees to work towards their intrinsic motivations. Doing so will ultimately reward both them and your organization. What other methods have you tried?