One purpose of a leader is to inspire followers to fulfill their leadership potential. In a perfect world, leaders coach their team members with one goal of empowerment. I would like to share a short story with you. In a prior leadership position, my workload, like that of many leaders, grew quite a bit. To achieve all that was on my “plate,” it was necessary to delegate decision-making over some key programs to others. The following 7 Steps to Empower Your Team are what helped me with empowering my team to achieve their own successes.


1. Communicate and Let Go

After considering the skills and experiences of each individual, the programs and projects were assigned accordingly. We all met individually and discussed the expectations. I clearly communicated the company’s goals, expected outcomes, and expressed a few caveats: (a) the program was no longer mine but now belonged to them, (b) they had complete authority over the decision-making and budget, (c) they were to select their team members, and (d) I was to be provided regular updates.

We are more powerful when we empower each other.

2. Boost Confidence/Motivate

Needless to say, because the programs were high profile many were nervous, and others were concerned. But I reassured them they were more than capable of managing the tasks. I had confidence in their abilities.

3. Be Available

In the initial stages, they had multiple questions, which consumed quite of bit of my schedule. But my responses were formed in such a way to guide them toward the answers they already knew. I simply reassured and reaffirmed that I trusted their decision-making. Not long after, the number of questions lessened, and they slowly began to assume ownership of the projects and programs. I was always available for guidance when necessary.

4. Build confidence

The initial fear of failure was slowly replaced by self-confidence. Why? Because they knew I had their backs, and through their best efforts, regardless of the outcome, there were no consequences. Knowing this enabled them to confidently assume responsibility and ownership.

5. Show Appreciation

“People may hear your words, but they feel your attitude.” – John Maxwell

Another factor is that I was genuinely grateful for their efforts. There is a lot to be said about the power of appreciation in leadership. (Check out this related article on leadership gratitude).

6. Expect the Unexpected

Upon completion, one of the programs did not turn out as expected. Together, we reviewed the processes and confirmed the decisions were based on firm data and clear rationale. Honestly, I would have made similar decisions. But together we discovered the faux pas, which surprised us both.

7. Empowered/Trusted

By being empowered and trusted, the individuals maximized their potential. They expanded their knowledge and became even greater assets to the organization. More importantly, they grew further into their leadership potential.


In the end, all of the programs and projects were considered successes. Each member was recognized, congratulated, and all were awarded. As an added prize, they were all given additional programs ?.  Was the entire process all roses? I can attest that it was not.

It takes time and does not happen overnight. These 7 Steps to Empower Your Team helped to build a successful teaming environment. There are many other strategies and steps to team empowerment, these are just a few. However, the end result was well worth the effort. Our team is stronger, more engaged, and knows their efforts are appreciated. These 7 Steps to Empower Your Team, along with others, are actively included throughout CultureSec.

Thank you,

-The CultureSec Team