The way to leadership success is making good decisions. But that begs the question: How do I make good decisions? Start with deep self-awareness.
Know Thyself Well
Your staff knows you pretty well. To manage their boss, it’s in their best interest to know your strengths and weaknesses. At a minimum, you need to know your strengths and weaknesses as well as your staff does. There are many benefits to being self-aware — you don’t take yourself too seriously, you’re okay asking difficult questions, you’re fine with not having all the answers and that will drive you to build positive relationships with others. So what can you do to stay on the path of self-awareness?
Feedback is a gift. People only give it to you if they care enough to take the time to share it with you. Now, not all feedback is helpful, so it’s your job to sift through the noise to find the truth. That’s the information you can use for self-reflection and improvement.
Emotions can run high when you get feedback you don’t want to hear. If you find yourself avoiding feedback or you get overly sensitive to feedback, take a minute to read this Harvard Business Review excerpt from “Fear of Feedback.”
Be Brutally Honest with Yourself
Challenge your ‘truthiness.’ Steven Colbert coined this term to describe a person making an argument or assertion from ‘the gut’ or because it ‘feels right’ without regard to evidence, logic or intellectual examination. Check your self-talk and your biases to see if you are being honest with yourself.
Be Comfortable Getting Intimate
Our work life today is far more intimate than ever before. We know a lot more about each other as co-workers, customers, vendors, bosses than we used to. How good are you at handling intimacy?
- Do you know how to manage conflict productively and avoid getting sucked into taking sides, gossiping, alienating others?
- Do you actively listen to others?
- Do you know when to use technology to communicate and when to use face-to-face interaction?
- Do you give thoughtful and helpful feedback so you, in return, will get quality feedback?
- Do you use confrontation effectively?
- Do you willingly reveal feelings and willingly show vulnerability?
Uproot Yourself to Get Grounded
Invest in developing your self-awareness, your emotional health. In “Grounded, how leaders stay rooted in an uncertain world,” our CEO Bob Rosen shares many examples of how leaders have learned to build their emotional health and use it to be strong leaders.