Autonomy in work for me is the derived from the self-determination of individuals to set a course in full engagement with a shared sense of accountability with others to produce a mutually agreed upon outcome.

For some, they only want to be told what to do and when as a means of personal security. For others, they never want to be told what to do and when to do it, paying attention to only what they prefer in the moment. Neither is as productive or satisfied as they are capable of if they were seeking to be autonomous.

In balance, people will thrive to collaborate together towards agreed upon objectives and goals to reach their own full potential. They are able to be creative in their work. They are able to purposefully connect to the importance of the work and the people conducting it together. They are together able to address the complexities of the work in resolution of the presenting challenges. Each is an accountable leader of themselves and a valued contributor in the group.

Reaching full potential and satisfaction in the work does not come from control, but rather the establishment of autonomy with the right people doing the right work.

“Control leads to compliance; autonomy leads to engagement.” — Daniel Pink —


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