Becoming autonomous is a difficult task for many individuals, and one of the biggest obstacles to achieving this autonomy is the imbalance that many leaders have in punishing mistakes and neglecting to praise their followers when they do well.
Often, we tend to focus solely on negative feedback and overlook positive feedback, but it is essential to give as much positive feedback as negative feedback to create a paradigm shift and foster autonomy. As a leader, it is your responsibility to complement your team as much as you correct them.
Effective leaders help their followers cross the bridge of shame and into autonomy by creating an atmosphere that is conducive to growth and self-confidence. This type of environment encourages followers to be bold in taking the initiative and trying new things.
By teaching your team to believe in themselves, you will help them to develop a sense of autonomy that will serve them well in all areas of their lives.
Of course, sometimes a robust conversation with a follower is necessary to discipline, mentor, and coach them. As a leader, it is your responsibility to help your team understand the reality of situations and the consequences of their actions. However, it is equally important to nurture even the slightest bit of autonomy that your followers display.
As your followers become more autonomous, they will take ownership of their work, which leads to a sense of responsibility and engagement – both of which are necessary for a successful business.
As a leader, it is in your hands to cultivate, stimulate, and facilitate autonomy in your team. Autonomous followers will make your life as a leader much more manageable, and it is essential to recognize that you have more power than you think.
By promoting a culture of autonomy, you will create a sense of ownership among your followers that will lead to greater engagement and success in your business.
So, as a question to ponder, in what stage of human development are you?