If you want to be an effective leader it is crucial in leadership to have a massive measure of self awareness. I would say self awareness is probably one of the greatest tools in life, as well as leadership to get results that stick.
In my career I have worked with some extremely talented leaders, who have been amazing at their jobs with great experience, but not so gifted with relational skills. Working alongside leaders who have no self awareness can be a complete nightmare and on a day to day basis completely demoralising.
When you see them approaching in the corridor you immediately want to turn and run in the opposite direction. You all know the type of leader I am talking about, highly effective and gets the job done efficiently, but leaves a train crash behind them.
A lack of self awareness is probably one of the leading reasons why well meaning leaders on high perches have blind spots, and to be frank, it can prevent an entire team, department or organisation from growing.
In organisations that are led by the traditional 'old boys club' this lack of self awareness is often exasperated. Those in top leadership positions are still often pale, male and stale despite the glass ceiling hole, that keeps getting bigger.
Just increasing diversity in leadership teams can improve self awareness and improve problem solving, increasing productivity and greater communication. Greater diversity of thought will impact your bottom line and help you to stop leaving money on the table.
So, why is it self awareness is not being measured regularly through the appraisal process or it rarely forms an integral part of the recruitment process?
Organisational culture is a system of shared assumptions, values and beliefs, which govern how we behave in organisations. These shared values have a strong influence over us and dictate how we dress, act, and perform in our jobs.
I think, as leaders we are responsible for culture, and understanding how our behaviour impacts others. Leaders have the potential to affect individuals, teams and the entire organisation.
If your team has been recently derailed and the morale is low, perhaps it's time to gain some self awareness. A self aware leader is optimistic and resilient and will bounce back from failure, keeping morale high across the organisation.
Instead of micro-managing we should adopt servanthood leadership, with humility and empathy. This does not mean being a pushover and saying yes to everything, but creating a culture where people feel valued and understood.
If you are a leader try to have informal conversations with your team to let them know you are interested in them as a person and not just their work life, at team meetings observe and allow others to express their opinions. Simple gestures like offering to make a cup of tea can go a long way in servanthood leadership.
When the culture values its people there is often high engagement from employees and they are less likely to leave during the storms, which in turn increases productivity and profitability.
If you would like to join me on this leadership journey why not start with yourself and download the first 3 steps to positive thinking my FREE ebook.