There is abundant literature to support this view that employee empowerment is advocated because of its perceived psychological benefits, such as an increase in internal locus of control; self-efficacy and self-esteem of employees, which in turn encourage employees to be innovative and creative – talents that are much sought after by organisations.
Employees in an empowered organisation are viewed as people that hold the key to knowledge, experience and expertise. ‘People are the source of ideas and innovation and their expertise, experience, knowledge and co-operation have to be harnessed …’ (Oakland, 1989, cited in Wilkinson and Brown, 2003: 181).
This paper argues that organisations need to adopt an employee empowerment strategy, if they are to harness the innovative and creative talents of their people, including leaders and managers.
But, the problem is how do organisations empower their people from both management and non-management positions, if they do not know what employee empowerment is and how it is to be implemented? The lack of knowledge regarding employee empowerment is dangerous, as it has serious implications how ‘managers and non-managers conceptualize employee empowerment’ (Hill and Huq, 2004: 1025).
There is concern in the management literature both at the conceptual and practice levels about the lack of published research findings and a framework for implementation, with regards to employee empowerment (Huq, 2008; 2010; 2015).
The methodology adopted in this research was qualitative in nature, comprising semi-structured interviews of individuals and focus groups. These methods were considered to be most effective, as it would help to gather information regarding the understanding, perceptions and experiences of employee empowerment, using two case organisations in UK, referred to in this paper as Large Organisation (LO) (a communications company) and Small Organisation (SO), (a manufacturing company).
Employee empowerment, Human resource management, Leadership, Innovation, Creativity, Locus of control, Self-efficacy, Self-esteem, Psychological empowerment, Huq’s Model D.