Increase the ownership of your people with an ownership model

A team of proactive, proud, initiative-taking and committed team members. That’s what a focus on ownership brings your organization. But how do you, as an agile leader, facilitate this ownership? An ownership model can help. Discover how to use this model within your team and organization.

How do you find the right balance between micromanagement and anarchy? And what do you do when teams want more freedom, while you doubt if they are ready for this? What are the risks involved if you do give them more freedom?

These questions are part of the development process of an agile leader. And these are exactly the sort of questions that an ownership model helps you answer.


51% of the employees don’t take ownership. While it’s proven that more ownership and engagement leads to more profit.

Ownership is essential

Today’s work is complex. Teams need to continuously develop their skills to stay ahead of the curve. And they need to keep coming up with creative solutions that meet the wishes and expectations of demanding customers. Team members must therefore be able to make their own decisions, and not have to wait.

That is what ownership stands for: teams have the capacity to face unexpected challenges themselves, see opportunities, and learn from each other and their customers.

Freedom to take ownership

Ownership cannot be imposed. An agile leader must create the right conditions. This means, among others: give your teams the freedom to take this ownership.

Case: more ownership through refreshed leadership

Are you getting frustrated because you feel that product owners are not taking enough ownership? Prevent this from damaging their trust in you.

Get inspired by the real-life story of a senior product manager.

Intervene or wait?

If you notice that the ownership in your team is not yet optimal, then the following question arises: do I intervene, or do I wait? Whichever you choose depends on how experienced the team is and how much freedom they need (or can handle) to take ownership. To properly make this assessment, an ownership model will help.

How an ownership model works

An ownership model visualizes the relationship between the freedom and the maturity of the team. Re-lead developed a practical version. There are two axes, two red areas, and a white area. When the degree of freedom (y-axis) and the competence of the team (x-axis) are in balance (white area), teams can take ownership. You can read more about this in the blog ‘Ownership Model’ by Peter Koning.

Varying ownership model per organization

An ownership model looks roughly the same for every organization. Nevertheless, the exact interpretation differs per organization. It depends on the existing company culture, the need to grow, the competition and the speed at which the market is changing.

Case: more ownership with a tailored ownership model

A large organization underwent reorganizations and started using the agile working method. This was not received well. As a result, ownership was low. Discover how an ownership model was the turning point.

Agile Leadership: unlock the passion, drive, liveliness and ownership of your teams. So they can unlock awesome customer value.

Peter Koning Snapshot Coach Agile Leadership
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