10 Ways You Can Start Empowering Your Employees

People create teams to share the workload when tackling problems. Individuals possess a variety of skills and experiences, and each can add to the growth of the project — otherwise, why would they be there?

There is a difference, though, between giving a team step-by-step instructions on what you want to take place, and giving someone a goal and turning them loose. Part of that difference is time: You will gain back a great deal of it each day, which you can then use to focus on other projects.

You also lose stress: Managing every moment as it happens highlights the failure points and generates pushback from employees. Rather than feeling like “If I wasn’t here, nothing could ever happen. They’ll just sit unless I tell them exactly what to do,” you can instead assign a goal andknow that the goal will be accomplished.

So how do you empower your employees to take on new responsibilities or handle tasks on their own? Members of Forbes Coaches Council suggest the following:

Members of Forbes Coaches Council share the top ways you can empower your employees.


1. Stop Micromanaging 

Proper delegation is a win-win for everyone that will help your employees’ success and build trust. Proper delegation involves getting buy-in, commitment, and assessing capability and capacity. Show you have faith in employees by reducing the time you spend monitoring them while they work and implement organizational structures that encourage delegation of authority, responsibility and teamwork. – Lianne LynePLP Coaching, LLC 

2. Put The Ball In Their Court 

Empowering employees is truly about relinquishing the need to control and micromanage their behavior. An excellent way to do this is to simply put the ball in their court. Give them the primary responsibility for creating their outcomes. Show them how being accountable for their achievements translates to adding real value to the company, and how quickly the dividends can add up in their favor. – Karima Mariama-Arthur, Esq.WordSmithRapport 

3. Delegate

Sounds flippant, yet I see it at every level of leadership: people who don’t know how to delegate or feel they are unable to do so. Excuses. To give your team members the freedom to use their expertise and tap into their passion, you need to delegate. Let go. Hand over more tasks than what feels comfortable. You will get better at delegation. I rarely see people get better at juggling responsibilities. – Leila Bulling TowneThe Bulling Towne Group, LLC 

4. Align Vision, Values And Mission 

Determine what your employee’s values, vision and mission for their work life are. Align those to the organization’s values, vision and mission. See where there is overlap and unleash the possibilities of that employee. When employees feel like they are working for something that truly aligns with their core values, they will feel empowered and passionate to do their work. – Monica ThakrarMTI 

5. Learn Your Team’s Strengths To Develop Trust 

Leaders with a loyal following take the time to know their team’s strengths, and the level of sophistication each person is at. They then take it a step further and guide the team to know and leverage each other’s strengths, fostering an ecosystem that is dynamic and designed to perform. Trust emerges through this process, further anchoring the team’s desire to bring forth each other’s best. – Alexsys “Lexy” ThompsonTrybal Performance 

6. Give Them Work That Stretches Their Abilities 

At times, individuals fail to develop at work because a manager is reluctant to give them work. At times its because they simply believe a person is not capable of doing the work. Other times they feel someone else does it faster or better. To make an employee feel empowered and help them grow and develop, give them work that stretches them, challenges them and allows them to reach new horizons. – Eddie TurnerEddie Turner LLC 

7. Facilitate A Self-Directed Learning Process 

Facilitate a self-directed learning process during conversations with your employees instead of giving them advice or solutions to a problem. Help them with questions in order to come up with their own answers or solutions, so they can not only take the initiative to pursue a goal and the responsibility for completing the task, but they can learn from the experience.  – Maria Pastore, Maria Pastore Coaching

8. Use Coaching Questions 

Leaders are often so task-focused that they forget to ask their employees their opinion on how to get things done. Questions deepen engagement, create ownership and accountability. Instead of telling, ask open-ended questions about how they will launch their project, achieve their deadline, overcome an obstacle, and get the resources they need. Coaching questions are a key driver for empowerment. – Loren MargolisTraining & Leadership Success LLC 

9. Foster And Empower ‘Solution-Searching’ Individuals 

In order to empower, we must position a culture of “solution-searching” individuals. Foster and empower them with the ability to figure it out, give it a try, dip a toe in the water and take the risk. In order to take risk, they have to feel confident. The only way to increase their confidence is to recognize, inspire and validate them. – Marlo HigginsMarlo Higgins, Your Chief Inspirational Officer 

10. Value Their Ideas And Accomplishments 

Leaders who value and recognize employee input and accomplishments create an environment where employees are more motivated to try harder and produce at their best. Valuing their ideas and feedback builds trust and confidence, which results in self-empowerment. Leaders who have an accurate view of themselves and are focused on others will naturally empower their team. – Melinda Fouts, Ph.D.Success Starts With You 

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Worried About Becoming A Leader? 10 Things You Should Know

Your supervisor is impressed by what you’re doing and has asked if you would like you to take on a little more responsibility. Specifically, they have a project and team they’d like you to oversee. The technical aspects aren’t a problem — you know you know how to tackle the material — but you’re really not sure about leading a group of people.

Team leadership requires developing a new set of skills. You have to be able to juggle personnel issues, assign tasks, manage resources and take responsibility for the end results, as well as inspire team members to stay engaged and creative.

Having concerns is rational: Taking on something new always involves a time of fumbling, and you care about both not creating a mess for the people you’re supposed to lead or damaging your own career by falling on your face. To help, members from Forbes Coaches Council have the following advice for people reluctant to enter a leadership role out of fear they won’t be able to properly manage a team.

Members of Forbes Coaches Council share their top tips for professionals who are worried about stepping into a leadership role.

1. Ask Your Manager Two Questions

Ask two questions of your manager: “What do you think it takes to successfully manage a team?” and “How do you see my strengths helping to build that success?” Check for alignment. Still concerned? Talk with your manager. You may feel that you have to have all the skills on day one, but usually, your manager views the new role as a growth opportunity and will help you thrive. – Edith Onderick-HarveyNextBridge Consulting, LLC

2. Lead Your People And Manage Your Processes

Never be reluctant to be a leader who models the behaviors you want to see in others. Don’t worry about managing people. If they like where you are headed, they will follow. Your job is to share the vision, set the tone and move to action. This gives people a purpose and reason to follow. Be a generous, fair and supportive leader with your people, but a tough manager of problems and faulty processes. – Hayward SuggsCommonquest Consulting

3. Create A Culture Of Meritocracy

Don’t focus on managing. Focus instead on enabling team performance, first by ensuring your own performance is impeccable, and then by creating a culture of meritocracy. As respect for your and the team’s work increases, you will find people rallying around you and your fear of leading will evaporate. You will realize you’ve been leading all along without forcing yourself to lead. – Gaurav BhallaAuthor of “Awakening A Leader’s Soul: Learnings Through Immortal Poems”

4. Don’t Let Fear Stop You

If you have imagined yourself in a leadership role, don’t let fear stop you from exploring what that would look like. Leading a team involves being clear on the expectations for each role then communicating in a way that play’s to individual’s strengths and helps to cover their blind spots. If you enjoy helping people grow and accomplish team goals, this path is worth exploring. – Shawn Kent HayashiThe Professional Development Group LLC

5. Be Willing To Fail

The best leaders are made, not born. Leadership is a skill that is mastered over a lifetime. At one point, you were a beginner at every skill you ever learned. The only way to learn is to be willing to be a beginner. Assume you’ll fail, assume there will be times when you won’t look good and learn from every single mistake. It’s not how good you are at first, but how good you are at learning. – David Butlein, Ph.D.BLUECASE Strategic Partners

6. Believe In Yourself

Leadership is possible for anyone. Have confidence in your own ability and capacity. Keep a growth mindset, and focus on what is possible and not what isn’t. Show your abilities and don’t be afraid to fall down. Every capable leader has stumbled along their path and gotten back up to become a better leader. Step into your potential. – Monica ThakrarMTI

7Embrace Confidence

If you desire to pursue a leadership role, then I advise you find your confidence. Leading a team requires confidence because you will likely make mistakes. However, you have to be capable of shrugging it off and moving forward because others are depending on you and your leadership capacities. Leadership is about growth, yourself included, and lack of confidence will inhibit your abilities. – Valerie MartinelliValerie Martinelli Consulting, LLC

8. Know You Have Value AA Leader

If you’re being approached to take the reins, there’s a valid reason why. Every leader has something unique to offer! You may be an excellent mentor, coordinator or listener who (even unwittingly) sets an example for others. Don’t hold back because your leadership skills don’t look like what you’re used to seeing. Your personal approach can make more of a difference than you realize. – Laura Smith-ProulxAn Expert Resume

9. Build A Diverse Team

You don’t know what you need until you know what you have. Tell the truth about your blind spots and take the time to understand your skills. Build a team where you can be honest and create feedback loops to stay grounded. Focus on complementary skills and surround yourself with people willing to understand your vision and goals. – Meredith Moore CrosbyLeverette Weekes

10. Do It, Even If You’re Afraid

Hopefully, you are not merely thrown to the wolves. Learn to lead as you have with every other skill set. Lean on the support of your leaders, take classes and get coaching. Let the team know you are learning alongside them. Make leadership development a part of your team’s culture. Learn together, fail together, grow together. Most importantly, even if you are afraid, do it anyway! – Maurice EvansIGROWyourBiz, Inc

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Library life

Were you hoping to check in with your Facebook friends last week, or longing to upload fallen tree pictures to Instagram?

Hurricane Irma forced many of us to disconnect from our devices in the days after the storm.

But a safe haven was offered to hurricane-weary residents by the Palm Beach County Library System, which opened its doors on Sept. 14, offering power, free Wi-Fi and that all-important air conditioning.

The main library and branches (except Belle Glade, which was without power) were open for limited hours at first, but expected things to get back to normal in a short time.

See Q&A from our local Estate Planning and Personal Injury columnists

See Q&A from our local Estate Planning and Personal Injury columnists

What a great service to the community — and a great way for people to get acquainted with all that the library has to offer. And, it just so happens that September is National Library Card Sign-Up Month

Glades Road Branch

20701 95th Ave. S., Boca Raton


Get hooked: Come with some yarn and a crochet hook and join the group. All skill levels welcome. Adults. 10:30 a.m. Saturday.

Less stress: Joe Hamilton of TrustBridge Health teaches five steps to leading a stress-free life. Adults. Preregister. 2 p.m. Monday.

Pizza, pages: Enjoy pizza while discussing “The Young Elites” by Marie Lu. Grade 6 and older. Preregister. 6 p.m. Tuesday.

Fly away: A ladybug release is followed by stories, games and a craft. Ages 4 to 9. Preregister. 4 p.m. Wednesday.

Hagen Ranch Road Branch

14350 Hagen Ranch Road, Delray Beach


It’s electric: For those who love to tinker, build and find out how things work, this session focuses on circuits and electricity. Build with Snap Circuits. Ages 11 to 17. Preregister. 3:30 p.m. Tuesday.

Book discussion: The Modern Mystery Book Club tackles “The Blind Assassin” by Margaret Atwood. Adults. 2 p.m. Sept. 28.

West Boca Branch

18685 State Road 7, Boca Raton


Don’t forget: Celebrate Elephant Appreciation Day with stories, songs and crafts. Ages 3 and older. 10:30 a.m. Saturday.

Neon glow: Use special acrylic paints on canvas boards to create a vibrant work of art. Grades six to 12. Preregister. 2:30 p.m. Saturday.

Bring tissues: Join in a discussion of “The Art of Racing in the Rain” by Garth Stein. Adults. 2 p.m. Tuesday.

Paint pretty: Kids can use metallic and glitter watercolor paints to create unique artwork. Ages 8 and older. 3:30 p.m. Tuesday.

West Boca Branch

18685 State Road 7, Boca Raton


Good chuckle: Dr. Shellie Fraddin presents a lecture on how the healing power of laughter leads to a happier, healthier life. Adults. Preregister. 2 p.m. Monday.

Exciting electrons: This electrifying demonstration from the South Florida Science Center and Aquarium includes many classic energy tricks. Ages 5 and older. Preregister. 3:30 p.m. Monday.

Boca Raton Public Library

400 NW Second Ave., Boca Raton


Farmyard fun: Join John Mallory’s Holy Cow, Mr.Pig and Bully the Longhorn Bull for dancing, fun and games. Free tickets available 30 minutes prior to the show. Children 8 and younger must be accompanied by an adult. 3:30 p.m. Friday.

Meet the author: Nonfiction writer Deborah Pollack will discuss her book “Bad Scarlett.” The former television actress (known as Deborah Courtney) is also an art dealer with a gallery in Palm Beach. Adults. Preregister. 3 p.m. Sunday.

Spanish River Library

1501 NW Spanish River Blvd., Boca Raton


Story time: Children of all ages, accompanied by a parent, are invited to enjoy music, stories and finger plays. No enrollment required. 10:30 a.m. Monday.

Facebook 101: Learn how to post status updates; comment on and “like” other people’s posts; and find/make friends. Smartphones, tablets and laptops welcome. Participants must have a Facebook account. Adults. Preregister. 1 p.m. Tuesday.

Boynton Beach Library

208 S. Seacrest Blvd., Boynton Beach


Be heard: Students in grades six to 12 can learn how to make their voices count. Snacks will be served. 5:30 p.m. today.

For babies: Little ones up to 24 months of age are invited to listen to stories, rhymes and songs. 10:30 a.m. Tuesday.

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Zen and the Art of Keeping Your Cool at the Office

If there’s one place you want to avoid feeling angry at, it’s the office. Anger can alienate your colleagues, distract you from doing good work, and ultimately lead to termination. Yet office anger is a problem many struggle with: 64% of people report having gotten angry in the workplace, and 45% report doing so regularly.

This is a problem, and clearly it’s one that many people struggle with. Wondering how you can keep your cool? Below we’ve compiled four tips to help you out.


Tip One: Deep Breaths

Sometimes, problems aren’t really as bad as they seem. In situations like these, it can help to take a few deep breaths.

In the moment, this might feel like a silly thing to do. After all, breathing won’t solve your problem. However, science has shown that deep breathing enhances the work of your parasympathetic nervous system, ultimately helping you feel calmer.

Because the real goal is to feel better, not necessarily to solve your problem.


Tip Two: Talk to Your Boss or Coworker

Of course, there are times when the problem is solvable. In these cases, it’s all about communicating your feelings in a respectful way with the people who can do something about the problem.

Don’t blame anyone. Just talk about why your feelings are hurt and look for positive, helpful solutions.

It is important to get a good read on someone before doing this. If your boss really is a raging jerk, they won’t want to hear it. But most bosses want their employees to succeed and most coworkers want to be liked, making this a potentially productive path forward.


Tip Three: Venting

Sometimes, though, you’re not even looking for a productive solution. You’re just looking for a way to vent your frustrations.

In this situation, it’s probably best to vent to a loved one or a friend — someone who’s outside the office, since office gossip can lead to trouble. At the same time, people need to vent, and sometimes office gossip is unavoidable.


Tip Four: Look at Things From a Different Perspective

There are some instances where nothing seems to work. Deep breaths feel useless, the person you have a problem with isn’t good with communication, and even venting is just a short-term solution.

In these situations, the real solution is to just accept the problem and move on. That may feel wrong if the problem is stressing you out, but the truth is, people stress other people out. In much the way that you’re getting stressed out by someone at work, you’re probably stressing someone out in some area of your life.

It’s unavoidable, and the best thing is acceptance. Chance the things you can change — see if you can’t rack your brain and determine an action you can take to prevent the problem before it starts — and accept what you can’t.


Forty hours a week is a lot of time to spend with a group of people. You’re bound to get frustrated, but at the end of the day you have to accept people for who they are. Love ‘em or hate ‘em, so long as you avoid throwing a work tantrum, you’re on the right path.


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CAPE TOWN – The South African National Taxi Council (Santaco) says talks will continue as leadership issues facing the organisation linger.

Santaco will hold its regional and provincial elections in November where new leadership will be selected.

Apparent factional disputes within the organisation have been cited as one of the reasons taxi drivers went on strike across Cape Town on Monday.

WATCH: Taxi strike called off; in best interest of commuters

The action was marked by violence as buses and vehicles were torched and stoned.

Santaco’s deputy chairman Nazzen Adburahman said: “We’ve had several meetings with those factions of Santaco. Every meeting is disrupted by these members who clearly don’t want to adhere to Santaco’s constitution.”

Operators are demanding leadership struggles at council be dealt with.

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Federal leadership hopeful Singh stands by Manitoba NDP leader Wab Kinew

One of the leading contenders in the federal NDP race is standing by the new leader of the Manitoba wing of his party as Wab Kinew acknowledges he will continue to face questions about 14-year-old domestic violence charges.

Jagmeet Singh, who has been endorsed by the newly-minted Manitoba NDP leader, said Tuesday he believes survivors but added Kinew now speaks out on violence against women.

“The person I know now, the Wab I know is … someone that’s been very clear on his position around making sure that we have a strong approach towards tackling violence against women,” he said in an interview in Ottawa.

“He’s made it very clear he is a strong supporter of women’s rights, of gender justice. So, the person I know now is someone that has been very clear on these issues so I … can leave it at that.”

Kinew’s personal life has recently become a high-profile political issue after the domestic violence charges came to light via anonymous emails sent to Winnipeg media outlets last month. The Indigenous activist, author and rookie MLA was charged with two counts of assaulting his former partner, Tara Hart, in 2003.

The charges were stayed in 2004 and court transcripts made available to date do not outline reasons for the decision. Kinew, 35, has repeatedly denied the accusations and has pointed out that the case was dropped.

Last week, Hart told The Canadian Press she stands by her assertions that Kinew threw her across the living room of an apartment they shared, causing rug burns that were so severe she could not bend her legs.

Speaking at a rally held by labour and poverty activists on Tuesday outside the Manitoba legislature, Kinew raised the issue himself.

“I know there’s a lot of discussion about me on social media, in the media and around people’s conversation tables,” he told the crowd of about 100 people. “And I want to say that I’m committed to answering questions and addressing concerns that any of you have, and will continue to show up for those conversations.”

Labour leaders, politicians and others who endorsed Kinew have stood by him and he beat rival Steve Ashton for the leadership Saturday by almost a 3-1 margin. But Kinew and the NDP have since been heavily criticized.

“One of the things that I’ve begun to understand over the past few days is, it’s not going to be up to me as to when people are done having those questions answered, so I’ll continue to show up and continue to speak about it,” Kinew said.

Kevin Rebeck, president of the Manitoba Federation of Labour, endorsed Kinew and spoke in favour of his nomination at the leadership convention. He said Tuesday many people in the labour movement are discussing the accusations, but he continues to back Kinew.

“Lots of people are talking, and I think a lot of people are talking about who is he today and what kind of difference can he make. And people believe the best.”

Kinew was brought into the NDP fold by former premier Greg Selinger as a star candidate in the 2016 provincial election and won a legislature seat.

He wrote a memoir a year earlier in which he described decade-old run-ins with the law that included convictions for impaired driving and assaulting a taxi driver. He recently received pardons for both convictions.

Kinew has talked at length about his troubled past, which also includes misogynistic and homophobic rap lyrics and social media posts, and has expressed a drive to change and be a force for good.

Federal NDP leadership candidate Niki Ashton — Steve Ashton’s daughter — has raised concerns about how Kinew has addressed the issue.

She has said Kinew has been dismissive of his former partner’s experience, adding it is important to have leaders on the forefront of “supporting survivors.”

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CYBERCOM and NSA leadership needs to evolve and that may mean a leadership split

President Donald Trump already announced that U.S. Cyber Command will split off from the National Security Agency and become a full-fledged combatant command, but the matter of leadership is still to be determined.

CYBERCOM and NSA share a leader, which can be a small head for two very big hats. Tuesday the dual leader of CYBERCOM and NSA weighed in on if two separate people should run the two organizations.

Kind of.

NSA and CYBERCOM chief Adm. Mike Rogers stopped short of making an endorsement, but seemed open to the idea of cutting his position in half.

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“We have got to be open to the idea that we are continually evolving in this [cyber] construct. Look how fast it’s gone in literally just over 10 years. We went from a functional component aligned against a combatant command … to now let’s go to a combatant commander. I think now the next question in this evolution is ‘Does that alignment still make sense as we’ve evolved a very traditional operational force,” Rogers said during a speech at an Air Force Association Conference. “I am blown away by the rate of change.”

Roger’s predecessor, Michael Hayden, who is now principal at the Chertoff Group, was more outspoken about his feelings on a possible leadership split.

“This is an absolute inevitability. To me the easy step was the elevation. A little more controversial, but I think still the necessary step is the breaking of the linkage between the person of the [CYBERCOM] commander and the person of the [NSA] director,” Hayden said. “The current structure is overburdening for one organization and the training wheels are getting in the way of the other organization getting up to actual speed.”

What Hayden means by training wheels is when CYBERCOM was set up, it was added to NSA because NSA had the infrastructure, manpower and expertise needed to grow CYBERCOM.

Now it’s time for CYBERCOM to go out on its own completely, Hayden said.

CYBERCOM was granted authority to become a full combatant command in the 2017 defense authorization act. Before that it was a subcommand under U.S. Strategic Command.


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