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To empower is to: "Enable, increase in strength, be made strong."

Empowerment is a common buzzword in the corporate world. It is nothing new in the Christian world, though. Jesus is a great example of empowering his disciples. He trained them; He was a living example to them. Eventually, Jesus had them running the whole organization.

As you empower your staff, here is a basic rule to follow: you pray and hear from God as to what to do and why, and allow your people to do the when and how.

An important fact to remember is this: the more your people who are involved in the planning and creative thinking, the more their hearts will be in it. This is your leadership multiplication program.

Here are some pointers on how to empower your staff:
  • Progressively give them bigger assignments and more authority to make decisions.
  • Allow them to take ownership of the problem and the solution.
  • Start with giving them responsibility for more of the details, even if they are not fully ready. They will develop skills as you oversee them.
  • Provide help only when they need it without always looking over their shoulder.
  • As you help them, give them ideas and information, but allow them to find the solutions.
  • Provide them with the tools and resources they need.
  • Allow them to find the best way to accomplish the task (be a reasonable risk taker).
  • Allow them to do their own scheduling.
  • Have a good report or inspection system in place. This is a must to have high efficiency and motivation.
  • Give praise when it is warranted and establish a good reward system.
  • When possible, push decisions down to the lowest possible level.
  • Encourage them as you empower them and let them know you trust them.
  • Train your people continuously.
Benefits Of Empowerment:
  • Frees your time up to focus on more important issues and creative thinking
  • Reduces the "co-dependent" factor between you and your people
  • Trust, loyalty and self-worth will soar
  • Builds a team spirit—they will be more concerned for the growth of the church and not only their department
  • They will grasp the big picture of the vision
  • Skills will improve in multiple areas
  • Reduces the fear element and promotes open and problem solving and thinking
  • Creates an environment of taking responsibility and having commitment
A good example of NOT empowering the people was the Soviet system in the Former USSR. The leadership style was "positional leadership" which says, "I am the boss and you do what I say."

On the other hand, you should use the "servant-leadership" style that Jesus used. During Soviet times, people had no rights and where told what to do in every area of their lives. As a result, the people had no motivation and no creativity.

This style of leadership also created a huge system of beauracracy, which is having too many levels of authority. What can you do to reduce stagnation and beauracracy in your church?

Who can you empower today? Change is not always easy, but if you have not empowered your people yet, it will be worth it!
I have strength for all things in Christ Who empowers me [I am ready for anything and equal to anything through Him Who infuses inner strength into me; I am self-sufficient in Christ's sufficiency].
(Phil. 4.13 AMP)
Copyright © Jim Harper Ministries
All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Author Biography

Jim Harper
Web site: Jim Harper Ministries
Jim ministers with an emphasis on teaching and facilitating unity among believers. For many years now his heart has been stirred to serve the Lord abroad with a calling to the Russian-speaking people wherever they may be. Jim has helped many in this people group to know Christ and grow in their relationship with Him. Jim has also worked in the Far East of Russia. There he assisted the Christian churches in the areas of growth and unity by giving counsel conducting seminars and leadership schools.

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