Aké Satia is the Chief Vision Officer at Aké Satia, a Human Capital firm in the DC area focused on strengthening organizations by bolstering the intersection of people strategy and business strategy.



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How Leaders Enable Freedom

Today, freedom can seem like an elusive concept.

And thinking about freedom might conjure images of a prisoner leaving a jail cell on the nighttime news. Or captives being set free in your favorite war movie. Or perhaps your mind recalls images of your favorite superhero saving a captured victim! While these are noteworthy moments when freedom is displayed, there is another type of freedom we all desire. And that is freedom of the mind. – Fortunately, to be free in our minds is something we can all attain. And it starts with how we think, what we dwell on, and the choices we make.

In organizations, leaders play a crucial role in helping those that work with them and for them to experience freedom. And one of the ways leaders can help their employees experience freedom is in the area of compensation. Compensation is one of the main levers an organization has at its disposal to influence employees. And leaders often make crucial decisions concerning the distribution of funds across an organization. – Ensuring that employees are not only compensated fairly but understand the rationale behind their compensation is key to giving them a sense of confidence.

Also, helping to create an environment where employees feel free to share their desires and concerns regarding compensation is crucial. Unfortunately, organizations are sometimes inclined to avoid discussing compensation with staff out of fear that they might be unable to meet their requests. And leaders can create an environment where employees feel empowered to have candid conversations about compensation. And they can do so by initiating the conversation and inviting employees to share their thoughts and pose questions. – This is vital because it enables employees to reveal their needs and concerns without fear of retaliation.

Another way that leaders can positively impact the well-being of employees and enable freedom is autonomy. As humans, we all desire to choose and have some control over what we do. And for an organization to succeed, clear standards and expectations must be defined and communicated. Leadership is displayed when one creates the flexibility for workers to further organizational goals in a manner that resonates with their values. And leaders can enable their employees to gain this autonomy by advocating for them and providing a soft place to land. – This is accomplished by seeking to understand the employee, speaking up for them, and acknowledging them generously for a job well done.

The third way a leader can enable those that work for them to experience freedom is by giving them room to grow. And this can be manifested by being a coach. – By not only asking them to take on tasks but also showing them what it means to be successful in an endeavor. And by offering them a soft place to land – a compassionate ear and a helping hand when they make mistakes. As humans, none of us is immune to making mistakes. And when employees feel supported, they’re more likely to be candid about their mistakes and ask for help. And leaders can encourage or discourage this behavior by how they respond when employees share mistakes they made.

Like many situations in life, striking the right balance is imperative. – Indeed, when we help others understand the ramifications and consequences of their actions without making them wallow in shame and despair, they are more likely to share their mistakes, request help, and grow.

For you and to you,




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