While it’s uncommon to hear about self-awareness when discussing leadership, it is indeed an important aspect to consider. When you think about it, the reasoning is simple. Every leader should be conscious about what they are good at while fairly acknowledging the things that they don’t know or need to improve on.
This balanced attitude allows leaders to be honest and own up to their own mistakes and shortcomings, which is essential for integrity and authenticity in front of any audience. Of course, this can seem counterintuitive to some in our over-competitive culture. Some people admittedly operate without acknowledging downfalls, living under the misconception that they must be perfect or people will question their abilities.
The truth is, you must be honest with yourself and let that honesty shine through. Whether or not you acknowledge your weaknesses, others will still see them–so having self-awareness will actually make you that much more effective. Not only does it show people that you are genuine, but it also gives you a better avenue for recognizing and improving your shortfalls.
Why Choose Self-Awareness?
When considering your relationships with others, the most apparent benefit of self-awareness is trust from those around you. When people see that you admit what you can and cannot do, they will trust your judgment more. At an organizational level, your benefits increase because self-awareness means you can ask for help and you can say when you don’t have all the answers. The result is a person who is constantly learning and improving.
Don’t Overplay Strengths
Another aspect that comes along with self-awareness is knowing where you stand and which strengths could benefit you. Many people get caught up with a strength that they leveraged in the past, constantly emphasizing it even though it may no longer be relevant. At that point, that old strength can become a weakness. With self-awareness, you’ll acknowledge the need to constantly grow instead of becoming stagnant.
Look for Feedback
Want to become more self-aware? One of the best ways to go about it is to ask for feedback, which is something leaders should always do. From work performance, feedback to feedback on daily events; collecting insight from multiple people will allow you to see your strengths and weaknesses and understand how others perceive you. This will tremendously improve your leadership skills.
Ask questions that encourage transparent, open-ended feedback about your performance. Be objective when you receive negative comments and at the same time don’t over-inflate positive ones. Self-awareness means being realistic and balanced. Exhibiting these qualities will make you better at problem-solving and decision-making.
Be More Self-Aware
At the end of the day, recognizing the importance and benefits of being self-aware will help you become a more effective leader who will only get better with time.
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Go Lucid. Go Beyond. Go Empyrean.
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.