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18 November 2018
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PRINCIPLES FOR AUTONOMY

Finbarr Murray
Finbarr Murray

06 November 2018 Finbarr Murray


Finbarr Murray discusses three principles for leaders to adopt for best results.

As leaders, it’s vital that we create the right environment for the right people to make the right decision at the right time and then allow them to deploy that decision for the best result. 


With simple principles we can create such a culture.

 

The first principle is to trust people to do the right thing. Most people don’t go to work to make their day harder. By recognising that mistakes will be made, a culture of trust, learning and openness will encourage staff to be more responsible and accountable for their own decision-making. 


Second on my ‘must do’ list is to create choices for staff. Choices within a framework that protects the organisation and individual helps to create a sense of empowerment, reducing the need to seek permission from the next level up and creates a more effective and flatter decision-making process. 


Third, recruiting the right people helps. Ensure that your recruitment process values evidence of decision-making. Weighting this as a skill set will create a much stronger internal culture and external identity as an employer and what you’re looking for from employees.  


To see these principles in action, visit a well-known fast-food brand. 


I’m struck by how a largely young workforce in a fast-paced, customer-facing environment seems to put all of these principles with ease into place and so successfully.  


It’s interesting to see the limited times that decisions are escalated, the freedoms being demonstrated and the range of choices being made – and the effect that all this has on the service being offered. 


As FM leaders working in a service-oriented world, we must recognise the value of creating similar autonomous working environments and services, whether it’s happier staff, customers, managers or financial sustainability. 


Having just started this programme, I have a long way to go, but I look forward to having a lot more autonomous decision-makers.


Finbarr Murray is managing director at 2gether Support Solutions