Research Backed Approaches to Leadership and Team Dynamics with Dr. Will Ramey, The Leadership Dr.
In order to lead others, you have to be able to lead yourself. I’m not talking about management and organizational skills. I am talking about knowing who you are, how you show up, and what impact you are having on others. This is self-awareness and it is a sub-dimension of emotional intelligence. Here we share what it is, why it’s important to leadership, and how to develop yours over time.
Who’s looking back in your mirror?
Mirror, Mirror on the wall, how can I be the best leader of them all? If only it were that easy. Developing self-awareness requires you to be open, acknowledge what you are not good at, then deciding to act. Self-awareness is only the first part of practicing good leadership, deciding to take steps to improve is the next.
I have found myself standing at this crossroads several times in my career. When someone holds that mirror up to me, I have a decision to make a) be thankful and absorb the feedback I’m receiving then do nothing, b) be thankful and absorb the feedback I’m receiving then choose to make a change, c) engage in a defensive conversation about my behavior and give 15 different excuses as to why I did what I did… I can admit at times I’ve chosen all three. What I find most beneficial is option a) and/or b). Being grateful for the feedback that someone shared so that I can increase self-awareness is always a good option.
As a leader, you have a responsibility to guide and inspire your team. But in order to be an effective leader, you need to first understand and improve yourself. That’s where self-awareness and self-improvement come in.
Self-awareness is the ability to recognize and understand your own thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. Self-improvement is the process of taking steps to become a better version of yourself. In leadership, both self-awareness and self-improvement are crucial for success. Let’s take a closer look at why.
Raise your awareness to connect with your team
Self-awareness is an essential component of effective leadership. Here are just a few reasons why:
- Better decision-making: Leaders who are self-aware are better able to make decisions that align with their values, goals, and strengths.
- Improved communication: Self-aware leaders are better able to communicate their thoughts, feelings, and expectations to their team members.
- Increased emotional intelligence: Self-awareness is a key component of emotional intelligence, which is critical for effective leadership.
- Stronger relationships: Self-aware leaders are better able to build strong relationships with their team members, creating a positive and supportive work environment.
With this awareness comes the choice to act. As you start to develop awareness and piece together how your actions have impact on your team, now you have a choice. Are you getting the most out of your team? Are you effectively leading your team through influence, communication, and relationships? If not, it’s time for self-improvement.
Improve yourself – improve your team
Here are benefits you’ll get out of continuously development of your leadership abilities:
- Continuous learning: Leaders who are committed to self-improvement are always seeking to learn and grow, which can help them stay ahead of the curve in their industry.
- Improved skills: Self-improvement can help leaders develop new skills and improve existing ones, making them more effective at their job.
- Better adaptability: Self-improvement can help leaders become more adaptable and flexible, which is essential in today’s rapidly changing business environment.
- Increased resilience: Leaders who prioritize self-improvement are better able to bounce back from setbacks and challenges, making them more effective in the long run.
How to Develop Self-Awareness and Self-Improvement as a Leader
So how can you develop self-awareness and self-improvement as a leader? Here are some tips:
- Practice mindfulness: Mindfulness practices like meditation and deep breathing can help you become more self-aware and present in the moment. (For more on this subject: How Mindfulness Helps You Lead | Dr. Will Ramey)
- Seek feedback: Ask for feedback from your team members, colleagues, and mentors on your strengths and weaknesses.
- Reflect on your values and goals: Take time to reflect on your core values and long-term goals, and think about how your actions align with them. (For more on this subject: Leaders – Make Time to Reflect | Dr. Will Ramey)
- Develop a growth mindset: Adopt a growth mindset and embrace challenges as opportunities for learning and improvement.
- Set goals: Set specific, measurable goals for improving your skills and abilities, and track your progress over time.
By developing self-awareness and committing to self-improvement, you can become the best leader you can be. By understanding yourself and continuously improving, you can inspire and guide your team towards success. So why not start today? Not sure how to get started and want to explore the benefits of getting a personal coach? Reach out to me. Let’s work together to help you unlock your potential and reach your goals.
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