It’s time to start trusting your employees more

A recent study published in the journal Psychological Science revealed that employees were 26% more satisfied in their roles when they had positions of power. SPONSORED CONTENT

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November 26, 2014 |
Steven Burns

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A recent study published in the journal Psychological Science revealed that employees were 26% more satisfied in their roles when they had positions of power.

“It’s hardly surprising,” writes Management Consultant Mark Lukens, in a Fast Company post. “When we give people control over their work and let them do it their way, they feel better about both the work and themselves. The work becomes something integral to their personalities, something that they are doing in a way they feel passionately about rather than the way they have been told to work.”

He suggests three ways to start empowering your people:

1. Flatten your firm’s hierarchy. Flatter organizations, particularly those that are structured around their specific purpose, give the power to all employees.

“By breaking down the old boundaries between those who think about the work—the managers and leaders—and those who do the work, decisions are made closer to the front line, by people who understand their consequences,” he writes. “Everybody has the power to direct and to do. Everybody is forced to make decisions, and so to engage.”

2. Embrace talent and channel it. Rather than trying to limit your people’s creativity and energy, you should focus it and make the most of it.

“Employee engagement is not just driven by people’s passions; it stirs up those passions, increasing the energy in an organization,” Lukens writes. “Being serious about engagement means not just accepting that energy but embracing it, letting your employees’ talents run free.”

3. Become an artist. Letting go of control is also about engaging yourself. 

“If you stop putting your energy into controlling those around you, setting your energy against theirs in daily battles, then you can instead channel it into what you are best at, whether it’s design, strategy, human relations or any of the other talents of a top manager,” he continues. “It means becoming an artist in your field.”

Read more from Fast Company.

Steven Burns | The Business Behind Design

Steven Burns, FAIA spent 14 years managing the firm Burns + Beyerl Architects, and during that time the firm’s earnings grew at an average rate of 24% per year. After founding his own software company, Steve took his management expertise to BQE Software, where he is refining their business strategy and product development for the company’s groundbreaking project accounting solution, BQE Core.

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