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Seeking Work Independence and Autonomy


work independence

Do you prefer work independence or being dependent on others to know your next task?

“Experts say that workers who believe they are free to make choices in the workplace — and be accountable for their decisions — are happier and more productive,” writes Rick Nauert, Ph.D, at Psych Central.

This quote comes from the article 3 Ways to Be More Independent at Work by  

  • If we need to bring others in to be successful, we will do that.
  • If we need additional resources or finances, we will secure them.
  • If we need clarification on the goals, we will ask for it.

But not everyone works in a situation that provides work independence.

In the article, the authors offer three tips and this particular one really speaks to how I have seen women become successfully independent and achieve their career goals:

“Document your successes, and share them.

Brag sheets aren’t just for college students — or for review time. Your manager has his own goals to hit, so don’t count on him to have time to notice your wins. Track them, and share them at the appropriate time, and you could buy yourself a bit of breathing room.”

I talk about this in more detail in a recent article Career Advancement: Branding for Your Future. In the article I suggest three steps toward work independence:

  1. Determine where you want your career to go
  2. Create a brand for that future position
  3. Spread the word

Susan Bernstein talks about the idea of spreading the word in her article Declare Your Independence Where It Matters: At Work