Self Awareness

In this blog we continue discussing the four pillars of leadership and there importance related to your performance as a leader.  Last week we discussed pillar two emotional intelligence ((EI) and outlined what it is. According to Daniel Goleman, the author of the seminal work on EI, It is “ the ability to manage ones self and the relationship with others.”  Over the next several blogs, we will examine the five key components of Emotional Intelligence beginning with Self Awarness today.   


What is self awareness?  Self Awareness is as simple as it sounds. You must be aware of how you are coming across to those that you lead and with whom you interact. Being aware that at all times you are being evaluated by others in a number of key areas:  appearance, mannerisms, attitude, mood, and confidence (just to name a few) is a major key to success as a professional. One thing that I always tell every leader that I work with on a individual basis, is that  you can not  – not communicate.  You are constantly communication something whether it is verbal or not.


As a young leader, I failed miserably at self awareness. Honestly I can remember having the attitude that it really didn’t matter how others saw me.  I was going to do what I thought was right and if they didn’t like it well it was their problem.  I was so wrong.  Because of my lack of self awareness and my inability to manage it, I missed a number of opportunities with employees that could have resulted in much better results.  Leaders must be aware of how others see them and their actions.  


Being aware that confidence is vital to every leader but arrogance is a killer. Leaders must make sure that the confidence they project is not misinterpreted as arrogance.  The difference between confidence and arrogance is razor thin. A arrogant leader has very few followers.  


Leaders must always be aware that their moods and attitudes affect employees in a huge way.  I often say that leaders are weather makers. With very little interaction, a leader can influence the weather (environment) of the office.  If a boss has a bad attitude, they can create constant disruption in the office environment and influence employee morale in a negative way that leads to dissatisfaction and job growth.  On the other hand, a positive attitude exhibited by the boss can create an environment of growth and satisfaction.  


Self awareness is a key component of emotional intelligence. Ask yourself. How can I change what I do as a leader to influence others in a more positive manner? If your like me, there are a dozen things I can think of right away.  Make a note of them and start making those changes to become more aware of your influence and how you can become a self aware leader.  


Next week we will discuss Emotional Intelligence component Self Mangement.  Until then Keep Sharing the Growth.  



“I often say that leaders are weather makers. With very little interaction, a leader can influence the weather (environment) of the office. “


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