“If we agree on everything, one of us is redundant”
This is one of my favorite leadership quotes from Colin Powell. This statement identifies true leaders want and encourage feedback from their direct reports.
This concept provides the leader with information needed to make sound decisions to help organizational growth. New and ineffective leaders miss the opportunity to engage with direct reports on decision making for multiple reasons. Some can be attributed to inexperience, lack of trust, and lack of self-awareness. All can be overcome with concerted efforts to develop as a leader and engage within the work environment. Leaders who are self-aware can begin to mitigate the inexperience and lack of trust mentioned earlier.
How do you become a self-aware leader?
- Look inside and become introspective
- Identify your strengths, weaknesses, values and how others view you
- Understand how your self-view impacts others and the work environment
- Knowledge of how your interactions (positive or negative) influence direct reports
- Ensure actions and decisions are based in an authentic framework
- Strive to build authentic relationships with everyone within the organization
- Adjust based on interactions and feedback from others
- Advocate for a continuous learning work environment
Work place impact of the Self-Aware Leader
The self-aware leader improves the work environment by modeling the attributes of self-awareness. This modeling allows direct reports to see and understand the importance of self-awareness. The leader actively acknowledges strengths and weaknesses. This provides a framework to enhance staff members’ development within the work environment by catering to staff strengths and working to mitigate weaknesses.
The self-aware leader provides direct reports an engaging work environment where they know they are valued and input is encouraged. This attribute showcases a leader who fully understands how they are viewed within the work environment.
Finally, the self-aware leader provides an organizational foundation for success by creating additional self-aware leaders.
How can you model self-awareness in your daily interactions? What benefits would self-awareness bring to your work environment?