Empowerment is bunk. Most people who’re serious about leadership know this, but it’s not because empowerment is a bad idea. It’s because most leaders don’t have the skill and courage to do it correctly. At its best, when we empower followers, we give them authoritative space to figure out for themselves that true leadership power comes from the inside, through a transformative and entirely personal process.
We provide guidance and allow them to take true responsibility and total ownership. We tolerate deviations from our style in pursuit of solutions we never dreamed were possible. We believe they can do it so they believe they can do it. This requires a lot of wisdom, discipline, patience and courage by the “leader” who creates this special space, within which the EMpowered follower transforms into an INpowered leader.
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