According to Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos.com, his number one job is empowering his people.
“Thinking about how I can empower my employees to be a part of the growth and innovation of the company.”
While employee empowerment is acknowledged as of key importance, it is an elusive goal for many CEOs, executives and managers. What makes Hsieh different?
Hsieh is comfortable in his own skin; secure in his own competency and limitations, so he doesn’t need to be the font from which all else flows.
As he points out, one good idea a day from him won’t come close to matching one good idea a year from each employee and not just the highly visible ones.
Some of the best ideas come from places a CEO would never have thought of.”
But employee empowerment often hits a positional brick wall that starts with the CEO and filters down through the ranks of the company’s positional leaders.
There are thousands of executives and managers who are insecure and the level of their insecurity defines to whom they will listen.
Most CEO’s who look at their corporate culture from the top-down are really preventing their company to grow faster, better, and more profitably.
And Just as true for other positional leaders as it is for the CEO.
What is most ironic is that by empowering employees, listening to everyone, adopting the good ideas without prejudice and publicly acknowledging their source does as much to enhance you as it does to push your group/company to greater success.
Flickr image credit: ZedBee | Zoë Power