I woke up yesterday morning to find out someone was sleeping in our guest room.
After my wife and I had gone to bed, one of our kids heard from a friend whose flight was delayed. They offered to let that friend stay overnight at our house so they wouldn’t have to drive exhausted the rest of the way to their destination. A text message let me know what was going on.
What struck me about this is what didn’t happen.
My wife and I did not get awakened with a knock on our door, asking permission to let the friend stay.
I like to conclude that our kids have seen our family’s values modeled often enough and consistently enough that they already knew what we’d say if they had asked. And this time, one felt comfortable opening our home to a friend without waking us up to confirm that we would be OK with it.
It did my heart good to learn that this morning. (Being able to stay asleep was good, too.)
And it made me reflect on how I sometimes led teams when I was in the corporate world.
❌ How many times did I expect my team members to consult me for input on decisions they should be empowered to make on their own? How often did they ask me why I didn’t trust them?
❌ How many times was I afraid to make an obvious decision without interrupting my senior leaders for permission?
As a leader, do your personal values match your company’s published values? Does your leadership model those values consistently enough that your team members can make the right decisions on their own?
Empowered employees are engaged employees. And empowered employees lead to engaged customers.
❓ What’s an empowered decision you or one of your team members has made recently?