patty mccord

Redefining the Mindset of Empowering Your Team with Patty McCord

When it comes to being a team leader, your success relies on your team’s performance. So it is your responsibility to ensure that your team succeeds. That success has various definitions and has many complex methods of being measured. But Patty McCord has an issue with one of the words often used by team leaders—empowerment. The mindset of empowering your team to ensure their success can easily lead to a less than optimized performance.

What’s wrong with empowering?

Empowering your team implies that power at one point was taken but has been restored to the team members. No leader wants to take away their team’s ability to perform. Doing so would be counterintuitive to the team’s goals. However, the mindset which has the team leader overseeing the distribution of each member’s power to perform leads to that very issue. This thought process can hinder the success of a team. It does not allow for the individuals to excel in their performance without the leader. Patty McCord suggests altering the way you see your role as the team leader. Flip the mindset into one where everyone within the team holds power over their ability to perform.

An individual’s power to succeed

In an interview with GLO’s Michelle Poscente, Patty said, “I think that people start their day, every day, with power. I haven’t met anybody who doesn’t want to go home at the end of the day and feel like you contributed something and that you did a good job.” As a whole, your team is responsible for accomplishing tasks. But each individual within your team has a specific skill set and the power to complete different aspects of those tasks. A team with the mindset of working harmoniously together and desires to succeed will always perform better. When you approach managing your team from the mindset that each member has the power to succeed in their tasks, your role as team leader shifts. It is no longer about what your team can do for you but what you can do for your team.

The responsibility of the team leader

One of the best things a leader can do for their team is to create a positive environment that strives to improve its performance. Perfection is not expected, but improvement should be. While there is no one way to measure performance, Patty offers a suggestion that goes beyond compiling metrics. Look out six months from the present and imagine your team is blowing past performance expectations. What is your team doing then that they are not doing right now? Meet with the members of your team to paint that picture. It is essential to learn what resources each member needs to achieve that picture. The leader is responsible for integrating these ideas into the team’s dynamic clearly and concisely. Maintaining the constant mindset of supporting each member as they succeed rather than empowering them to succeed is a powerful one and it is sure to improve the performance of your team.


EJ Niemczyk

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