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COVID has opened our eyes to the creepy reality of elite sport and art on display live in front of no one. Empty stadiums, rinks, fields, studios, courts and pitches, all generating zero ticket revenue. It is analogous to an empty, lonely bus driving without passengers.
Great leaders fill seats. They uncover ways to get passengers on the bus. How? They create an environment where people contribute to the development of their plans. They give autonomy. Autonomy, the gift of choice to others, presents opportunity for others to feel like they have purpose. That purpose secures internal motivation to create good things and keeps people coming to work happy and fulfilled.
Autonomous leaders engage the minds of the people around them, trusting that results derived from groups far out-sustain and out-perform the work of individuals.
They ask open-ended questions in fantasy
“What if I told you we could all work from home? Tell me what would need to be done to make it happen."
They approach from curiosity instead of blame
“I’m curious, entertain me. Why do we count inventory on Mondays if it’s likely to change by Friday?”
They structure environments that are safe to speak-up
“What do you hate about this plan; you won’t offend anyone.”
They encourage healthy debate
“Good, now someone counter that even if you agree with him.”
They let others choose which way to get things done
“PJ-time kids. Do you want to go up the stairs one or two at a time?”
They put their teammates on display without giving up ultimate control
“You’re the expert. If resources were unlimited, tell me what you would do to fix _______.”
When given the choice in how to succeed, people will both lead and follow at the same time.
and that product will be more impactful than anything you could have created by yourself.
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