The Impact of Awareness
We often refer to the merits of leaders being self-aware – knowing their personal strengths and weaknesses. It is also important for leaders to be other-aware. This involves being mindful not only of the strengths and weaknesses of those you lead, but also their emotional response to your behaviors and emotions.
When people are fearful or angry they withdraw emotionally. Optimistic and energized people tend to be more creative and productive. The mood of the leader and how the leader interacts with others strongly influence the tone of the environment and, thus, performance. Exceptional leaders realize that people tune into the mood around them which affects how they feel and what they do.
A leader with strong technical knowledge of their organization and industry who doesn’t inspire positivity and enthusiasm in others may see mediocre results at best. On the other hand, a leader skilled in building effective relationships can develop a loyal, highly productive team. Fred Hassan, a turnaround CEO who has left multiple organizations healthier than he found them, says that “in his value system the human factor is most important”.
How aware are you of the impact you have on the emotions of the people around you? Do you inspire others or stress them? No matter how smart you are, Fred Hassan might offer you a few tips about leading others.