Give It Up. Autonomy

Transitioning People Through Constant Change

In this series of posts I am exploring the Give It Up model in which we move away from the command and control of manager to the delegation and trust of true leaders. 



Leaders can only truly give up control by giving people autonomy.

There is extensive research and study into the effects of employee autonomy showing increased well-being, levels of job satisfaction, engagement, motivation, and productivity. This leads to reduced attrition and retention of talent within the organisation.

Employee autonomy can vary from organization to organization. For some it means being free to set their own work schedules. For others, it means employees get to decide how they undertake their work. There are even organizations where it means employees can choose what they work on, with whom they work, when they work, and how they work. 

Whatever the level of autonomy within the workforce, it should be about allowing employees to shape the way in which they work in order to perform at their best.

The focus is on what is done rather than how it is done. 

The leader checklist for employee autonomy includes some of the things we have already discussed in this chapter. That is because none of the items on the ladder from command and control to delegate and trust operates in isolation.  

The autonomy checklist includes:

·      Building trust

·      Celebrating mistakes and learning from them

·      Provision of guardrails or principles

·      Allow for creativity, innovation, and experimentation—stop being risk adverse

·      Giving employees ownership for the outcomes and determination of their own process

·      Ensuring the necessary skills and capabilities are in place

·      Platforms for collaboration—autonomy does not mean working in isolation

·      Delegation of more work and decision-making

·      Provision of frequent feedback

·      Availability of open communication channels.Game score

Game score

Winning teams don’t do great things because they were told to. They have the power to make great things happen. They are free to experiment, create and innovate.

In subsequent posts in this series I will be exploring the additional elements of the Give It Up model.

Karen FerrisComment