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Getting Others To Take Ownership

By Dr. Jeffrey Magee

Creating climates whereby individuals assume ownership of their actions, tasks, and the reputation of an organization, comes down a simple sequence of inter-linked actions. In working with profit and not-for-profit sector organizations over the past decade, a clear model has risen that differentiates the winners from the losers.

Winning organizations and individuals assume ownership and do not engage in the excuse game for not attaining performance expectations. How you go about assuming ownership and how you go about creating a climate whereby others assume ownership of their job, responsibilities, them self, and the organization over-all can be achieved by understanding how four factors are inter-linked, and thus where your first energies must be directed.

So the burning question in most leaders’ mind is “how do we go about getting others to assume a higher level of ownership?” What has been learned is this:

  • When you know what the depth of your skill abilities are (formal and informal education, technical and non technical training, certification and credentialization work, accolade experiences) and you draw upon those and apply them appropriately, you experience success in accomplishment or a self victory. When one experiences a victory ones’ self esteem goes up!

  • When one is victorious one becomes significantly more motivated about applying themselves, assuming more responsibility, and becomes more excited about participating. At this point the necessity to establish incentive and motivation programs and initiatives becomes less necessary!

  • When one becomes motivated over seeing their victories and successes, one becomes significantly more passionate about life and the endeavors they apply themselves into.

  • We take ownership of those things and people we are Passionate about.

  • And to get people to take more ownership starts by setting them up for victory!

Doing a reverse analysis of some of the most successful (SouthWest Airlines, Harley-Davidson, Army National Guard, OfficeDepot, WalMart, Clear Channel Communications) is how this model was developed. People that assume ownership seem to be among the most passionate at what they do. Those that have high passion for what they do are continuously motivated by what they do. And this only happens when people are set up for victories by doing those things which they are best mentally and physically equipped to undertake. All of this feeds ones’ self-esteem and when one operates from a level of high self-esteem, it is both exciting to see what one can accomplish, it also reveals what one willing assumes ownership of!

Any leader that creates a climate in which these four elements thrive, will also see their business thrive.

Read other articles and learn more about Dr. Jeffrey Magee.

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