In Leadership, Self-Awareness is Everything.  How well do you know yourself as a leader? 

With the challenges of 2020, leaders are tasked with a workplace of uncertainly and insecurity. Being the “best leader” is more important than ever.  So, how do you ensure a culture of success in uncertain times? Read on to learn how to use self-awareness to become an agent of change, respected manager, and discover the “best leader in you”.

Self-awareness is important because when you have a better understanding of yourself, you are empowered to build on your strengths and embrace opportunities to improve.  Successful leaders understand that what they bring to their position is not just about business smarts, but rather an entire package that all plays into their strengths and weaknesses.

A study by the Cornell School of Industrial and Labor Relations (2010) found self-awareness to be the strongest predictor of overall success. It examined 72 executives at public and private companies with revenues from $50 million to $5 billion. The study concluded that awareness of one’s own weaknesses enables leaders to work with others who have differing strengths. Collaborating with and capitalizing on other’s ideas and abilities only strengthens productivity and enhances the culture of the organization. In turn, a lack of self-awareness can potentially alienate others and negatively impact the overall success of an organization.

 Self-awareness allows leaders to identify the gaps in their management skills and uncover the areas in which they are most effective as well as areas that need additional work. These understandings aid them in making discerning decisions, and help them be more effective in motivating employees towards positive outcomes. Learning to be self-aware isn’t always easy, but mastering it can go far to improve leadership skills and create a more nurturing business culture

To be aware of your leadership effectiveness, you should consider how your thinking style, behavior traits, and interests contribute to your management success? The 6 most common organizational leadership skills and questions you should consider are listed below.

Leadership Skill 1 – Creating a Vision

Leaders who excel at creating a vision vividly imagine new ideas, directions, and innovations for the future.

  • Do you think big and redefine the boundaries of what’s possible for you team, organization, and industry?
  • How does your decisiveness, judgement, and personal interests affect your success in creating a vision?

Leadership Skill 2 – Developing Strategies

Developing strategies is all about transforming goals and ideas into action plans that are both innovative and achievable.

  • Do you understand your organization’s unique resources and challenges?
  • How does your assertiveness, conformity, and judgement affect your ability to be an agent of change?

Leadership Skill 3 – Ensuring Results

Leaders who ensure results, implement organizational priorities and make sure they get carried out accurately and efficiently.

  • Do you set the pace of work to establish expectations of quality throughout your team?
  • Are you deliberate with decision making? Do you weigh the pros and cons before recommending changes?

 Leadership Skill 4 – Inspiring People

Creating clarity and unity around ideas is the core of inspiring people.

  • Do you communicate with contagious enthusiasm for new endeavors?
  • Does your sociability and outlook affect your ability to convince peers, superiors, and subordinates of the merits of their cause or line of reasoning?

Leadership Skill 5 – Being Approachable

By being approachable, leaders empower their team members to come forward to get clarification, address concerns, and present ideas.

  • Are you open to feedback?
  • Do you build morale by making others feel heard?
  • Does your assertiveness, sociability, and accommodation affect your approachability?

Leadership Skill 6 – Mentoring Others

Effective leaders know that mentoring others is an investment in the future of the organization.

  • Do you help team members develop skills, connections, and confidence to do their job effectively, growing the next generation of leaders in the process?
  • Do you enjoy collaboration, compromise, and helping others?

Did you know that 95% of all people feel they are self-aware?  However, only 15% truly are. As a leader, being self-aware of your strengths and opportunities of improvement provides you with insight on how to create and ensure a nurturing culture in a time of predominate uncertainly. Without the right tools, this process of reflection and self-awareness can take years. However, there are online tools available that provide personalized reporting that simplifies this process and will save you time.  Now that you know what you need to be self-aware, you can start shopping for the right tools.

“Your visions will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.”
― C.G. Jung

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