Sean Lynch, June 27, 2016
“Deliberate” is a word that I have been using and thinking about lately. Most of us should strive to be more deliberate. Too often, we are distracted, in a hurry, not paying attention, and focused on something other than what we are doing. What are the consequences? We don’t communicate effectively, we don’t see and respond to people’s needs, we don’t help our colleagues succeed, and we allow potentially non-supportive organizational cultures to emerge.
The best leaders do things deliberately. They are deliberate in their behavior, communication, interactions, and their thinking.
Being deliberate requires developing self-awareness. We must be able to pull the lens back and attempt to see ourselves as others see us. We need to monitor our thoughts and actions as they’re happening. Only then, can we recognize and withhold any conditioned, habitual, or instinctual reactions while we insert more effective leadership responses.
Develop self-awareness around:
- Yourself. Do you have an accurate picture of yourself, your strengths and weaknesses? Is your mindset biased for personal growth? Do you know what drives and motivates you? Are you aware of what generates your emotions?
- Your behavior and your impact on others. Do you realize the impact that you have on those around you, good and bad? Do you manage your behavior to create trust and make people feel comfortable interacting with you and giving you feedback?
- The way you think. What assumptions dominate your thinking? How do you make sense of events and experiences? Do you understand your mental model of the world and challenge it to achieve richer understanding? What are your preferred defenses when something conflicts with that model?
Developing self-awareness is critical for leaders. Pay attention to yourself, your behavior, and your thinking. Use that awareness to be deliberate.