Lesson notes, exercises, downloads, and recommended reading are below the video. On mobile, the video will rescale when you play it.

Empowerment: The Organization Giving up its Power

What happens when organizations give up their power to the people within them? The answer is ’empowerment’.

Watching this video is worth 2 Management Courses CPD Points*.
(See below for more details)

The Nature of Organizations
This video is part of course module number 6.1.3
Program 6: Managing within Organizations
Course 1: The Nature of Organizations
Section 3: Power in Organizations

Other videos in this section include:
What is Power? https://youtu.be/mIlnEkzIiHs
Amitai Etzioni: How Organizations Secure Compliance https://youtu.be/4mSdeda8elk
Robin Fincham: Three Levels of Organizational Power https://youtu.be/Qcd_UcHGCe8
The Power of Governance https://youtu.be/QI4pGksO4Ns
French and Raven: Social Power Bases in Organizations https://youtu.be/wLtTu8B0aek

Empowerment is…
‘a management process that grants people genuine control and authority to act and to make decisions within the workplace’

There are four important components to empowerment:
1. First the granting of power must be led by more senior managers than the people granted the power.
2. Second, there is no power unless those people’s peers endorse it.
3. Third, the meaning of power here is control and authority over your own work.
4. And fourth, the power granted persists beyond a narrow time frame or a specific task or context.

This last point separates true empowerment from a delegation of power for a specific purpose. Delegation is always temporary and situational.

The reality is that in modern organizations – especially, take a look at Handy’s Triple-I organization – https://youtu.be/gFRXiMkIg6k – managers need to give up a measure of control (and, therefore, power) to get results.
Empowerment has a number of direct benefits:
• Access to individual thinking and creativity
• Increased morale and motivation
• Greater sense of responsibility for work and therefore for outcomes
• Higher levels of job satisfaction (and, therefore, reduced stress) arising from a sense of autonomy and of achievement

There are risks and costs to empowerment too:
• Potential conflict from loss of clarity
• Breakdown of respect for hierarchy
• Demotivation of people who just want to be told what to do (see Theory X / Theory Y video: https://youtu.be/fS5iqEf1Azs)

The result is that you need to work hard to make a success of empowerment (as with everything else!):
• Performance feedback
• Recognition and reward for organizational outcomes
• Tolerance of failure and avoidance of blame culture
• Strong learning and personal development culture

Empowerment as a Power Base
So here is a speculation. If empowerment grants me power, then I have a power base that French and Raven were not aware of:
Empowered Power – based on socially endorsed organizational authority, granted by legitimate power

1. What is the level of empowerment at the organization where you work? Evaluate critically the effectiveness of this level of empowerment? (2 MC CPD Points)
2. Would you recommend an increase or decrease in the level of empowerment in your organizations? If so, what benefits would the change give? (2 MC CPD Points)
3. If you had to implement the changes above, how would you go about it? What would be your priorities? (2 MC CPD Points)

Free Resources
– CPD Tools – https://gum.co/MC-CPD
Paid resources
– Management Courses Onboarding Kit – https://gum.co/MC-ObK ($3)

– Understanding Organizations https://geni.us/oB774Do
– Images of Organization https://geni.us/hrOemEs
– Inside Organizations: 21 Ideas for Managers https://geni.us/YwwL
– Gods of Management: The Four Cultures of Leadership https://geni.us/bpPeC5

Managers Need a Basic set of kit to do your job well. Here are my top recommendations: https://kit.co/MikeClayton/manager-s-work-kit (the links are affiliated)

Management Courses Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Points
You can record your Management Courses CPD points on our free, downloadable CPD record log.
Download it at: https://gum.co/MC-CPD

Each video has two levels of MC CPD points. For this video:
– If you simply watched the video, record 2 MC CPD points
– If you also carried out all of the recommended exercises, score a total of 8 MC CPD points

Links to our book recommendations are affiliated through Amazon

#Management #ManagementCourses #Empowerment


A Thorough Introduction to Organizational Culture [Compilation]
Introduction to Organizations: A Compilation of our Introductory Videos
What is Globalization?
Kim Cameron: Positive Organizational Scholarship
Charles Handy: Philosopher of Organizations
Edgar Schein: The Master of Organizational Culture
Harold Geneen: Data-driven Charismatic Organization
Chester Barnard: Organizations as Networks of People
Max Weber: The Father of Organizational Theory
How we Work: Geert Hofstede’s 6 Cross-Organization Cultural Dimensions
National Culture within an Organization: Geert Hofstede’s 6 Cultural Dimensions
Quinn and Cameron: Competing Values Model of Organizational Culture
Edgar Schein’s 3 Levels of Organizational Culture
Cultural Web: Johnson & Scholes on Where Culture Originates
Introduction to Organizational Culture
French and Raven: Social Power Bases in Organizations
Power in Organizations: The Power of Governance
Robin Fincham: Three Levels of Organizational Power
Amitai Etzioni: How Organizations Secure Compliance
Organizational Power: What is Power?
Virtual Organizations
Brian Robertson’s Holacracy Organizational Model
The Agile Organization
Adhocracy Organizational Model
Peter Senge’s Learning Organization
The Matrix Organization Model
Charles Handy’s Triple-I Company
Charles Handy’s Federal Organization Model
Charles Handy’s Shamrock Organization
Charles Handy’s Gods of Management
Henry Mintzberg’s 4 plus 2 Organizational Types
Edgar Schein’s Two Organizational Cultures
Why do we need Organizations? Structure vs Agility
The Features of Organizations: What an Organization Needs
Organizations as Processes: Understanding an Organization as a Set of Processes
Organizations as Structures: Understanding an Organization as a Structure
Morgan’s 8 Organizational Metaphors: An Organization is Like a…
What is an Organization? – the Nature of Organizations

Mike Clayton

About Mike Clayton 

Dr Mike Clayton is a (former) Project Manager and now a management educator. Having trained thousands of people at live workshops, seminars, and conferences, he now delivers training mainly via video. He has 14 books with international publishers and runs two successful YouTube channels. He is also the founder of OnlinePMCourses.com

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