Empowerment in the Matrix Organization – What have you done to earn it?

Anyone who has had any form of management education in the last several decades can recite the mantra – empowerment is good! We all get the theory but there are practical pressures that sometimes push us the other way.

In complex matrix organizations we may not know our people so well. We may be on different sites, from different cultures and time-zones – there are lots of little things that can cause misunderstandings and undermine trust.

Some are not so little – tighter regulation like Sarbanes Oxley (that solved all the risk management problems in the financial sector didn’t it) has embedded tighter controls in the governance and operating mechanisms of organizations. Get it wrong as a senior manager and you may be going home in handcuffs!

Normally we deal with this by working on the skills and attitudes of the mangers, and that remains important, to balance the myriad pressures to micromanage.

But how about the individual – it’s all very well blaming managers who do not empower you – but what have you done to earn the right to be left alone?

As an individual we can make sure that our manager has confidence in us; make sure they are not surprised about things they should have known about,  take steps to show our competence, keep developing new skills etc…

Managers do not empower people they do not think are capable and who they do not trust.

If you want to be more empowered, ask what you can do to build capability and trust with your manager. Or you could just wait and hope they go on a training course.

We think there is too much central control in complex companies and that both managers and individuals need to work hard to roll it back.

See more about our Speed Lead process  or see how you compare at our speed survey.

What have you done to earn the right to be empowered?

Updated May 2013 to remove links to removed pages.

Educate yourself further with a few more or our online insights:

30 years of experience learning with a range of world class clients

We work with a wide range of clients from global multinationals to recent start-ups. Our audiences span all levels, from CEOs to operational teams around the world.  Our tools and programs have been developed for diverse and demanding audiences.

View more of our clients
Two woman talking with a cup of coffee

Tailored training or off the shelf modules for your people development needs

We are deep content experts in remote, virtual and hybrid working, matrix management and agile & digital leadership. We are highly flexible in how we deliver our content and ideas. We can tailor content closely to your specific needs or deliver off the shelf bite sized modules based on our existing IP and 30 years of training experience.

For more about how we deliver our keynotes, workshops, live web seminars and online learning.

Discover our training solutions