Self-awareness in leadership begins with knowing yourself. You need to know your motivations, emotions, strengths, and weaknesses.
The question you may ask yourself is: Am I a self-aware leader? When you have self-awareness, you feel more creative and more confident. You will set more realistic goals, make better decisions and improve your communications.
There are two main aspects of self-awareness in leadership:
Internal self-awareness: This is how we perceive ourselves regarding our aspirations, thoughts, feelings, strengths, and weaknesses.
External self-awareness: This pertains to how others see us.
The following seven tips will help you empower yourself in both aspects.
- Focus on yourself
You can gain insights into yourself by using meditation to discover how you might focus on self-improvement and growth. Through meditation, you can become fully aware of your emotions and feelings. Avoidance can be brought to light by being more aware of yourself. A Leader must challenge their own negative emotions to be better at decision-making.
- Feedback from co-workers and trusted friends
There are critical perspectives that can be gained by seeking input from others. Those we trust can help us know ourselves better. Utilizing 360-degree evaluations in the work environment can significantly help self-awareness.
Keeping a written day-to-day record of tasks can be an excellent tool for development. Write down events of the day, difficult decisions, confrontations with teams, and how you resolved issues. This process can help with considering past and future decision-making. Reference your journal often and analyze it to master your internal self-awareness.
- Seek other perspectives
Having your insight on an issue can be limiting. Seeking other viewpoints is critical for someone in leadership. Some dynamic leaders have had important input from a trusted advisory council. Not all advice has to be taken, but it can be an option in decision-making.
- Practice good communication and listening
To be a self-aware leader, being a good listener is critical. It creates bonding with teams and leads to various learning opportunities.
- Understand the needs of others
Find a coach or mentor to help you grow in self-awareness. You can significantly sharpen your viewpoint by connecting with others and learning how they think about issues. You’ll round out your perspective when you spend time considering other views.
- Set goals effectively
Every leader must master realistic goal setting if they are to achieve success in their organization. Leading yourself and your team without a path to success is impossible. You can’t improve anything you can’t measure.
Becoming a more self-aware leader is a process that takes some time. Apply some of the ideas above daily, and you will improve your level of awareness as a leader. Check out our blog post on “The top 5 successful leadership traits“. You might also enjoy our Wednesday Morning Memo on “Putting emotional intelligence in practice in your leadership“.