Good Leadership: Results that Stick
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 and leadership to get results that stick. In my career I have worked with some extremely talented leaders, who have been amazing at their jobs. Working alongside these leaders with great experience, but who have no self-awareness and lack relational skills can be a complete nightmare and on a day to day basis completely demoralising for employees working underneath them.
A lack of self-awareness or ego is probably one of the leading reasons why well meaning leaders have blind spots and to be frank, it can prevent an entire team, department or organisation from growing. 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. When you see them approaching in the corridor you immediately want to turn and run in the opposite direction!
So, why is it self awareness is not being measured regularly through the appraisal process or rarely forms an integral part of the recruitment process?
In organisations that are led by a traditional ‘leadership’ cultures may lack both diversity and self awareness. Those in top leadership positions are still often pale, male and stale, despite the glass ceiling, that hole needs to get get bigger.
Greater diversity of thought will impact your bottom line and help you to stop leaving money on the table. Just by increasing diversity across leadership teams we can improve self-awareness, increase productivity and greater communication.
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. A self-aware leader is optimistic and resilient and will bounce back from failure, keeping morale high across the organisation.
If your team has been recently derailed and the morale is low, perhaps it’s time to gain some self-awareness.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.
Simple gestures from leaders such as having informal conversations with your colleagues and letting them know you are interested in them as a person and not just work issues can go a long way! Even offering to make a colleague or your team a cup of tea can go such 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.