The innovation of a blind spot monitoring system in cars has made a tremendous impact on safety since its inception. No matter what is happening around you, the sensors notify you of the potential danger. The bigger the threat, the more advanced warning the car deploys. If only humans could adapt and employ similar driver-assisted technology. It would have the potential to monitor every moment of connection we have with others.
We all have blind spots, or vulnerabilities that manifest in our lives. They are thoughts, behaviors, feelings, values, actions, etc. While these traits and behaviors may be invisible to us, they are being felt and seen by those around us. Oftentimes, our behaviors can inadvertently cause so much noise and chaos, it derails our team’s productivity. It can also be a symptom of myopia or nearsightedness in our leadership, which can lead us in the opposite direction of what we want to accomplish.
The process of uncovering blind spots carries the risk of emotional exposure and uncertainty. The experience is not comforting. It takes courage to address and take ownership of those behaviors that are not serving you or your team. So, where do you start? This begins by working with a fellow leader, coach or mentor that you trust. This will give you greater insight on your strengths and future opportunities to lead more effectively.
Below are a few tips to help uncover your leadership blind spots. If the goal is to support, inspire and motivate your team to success, it only makes sense to start with self-awareness.
Attitude dictates outcome. Lead with positivity and optimism. It’s contagious!
Be Present – Not Past
Focus on operating in the present moment. Reflecting on the past and the lessons learned is healthy. Living and operating in the confinements of the past can impede your ability to lead effectively.
Working together as a team is vital. Be sure to focus on the “we” not the “me” mentality. Everyone knows something, not everyone knows everything. Being a leader is not an easy task. Just because someone has experience in a field does not mean they are equipped to lead. Make sure that you fit this role and are consistently receiving feedback from a mentor or coach.
As a leader, be sure everyone has clarity and full understanding of their role, the goals and expectations. One can never assume the team gets it just because the they were told. Work without purpose is torture. It is imperative that your team is driven and share your goal.
These conversations can be stressful and often time avoided because they are uncomfortable. Holding the team accountable is necessary. If a behavior needs to be addressed, then a conversation needs to happen. The moment you put your head in the sand is the moment the entire team is watching. Be cognizant of the risks.
Blame is a powerful word that assigns wrongdoing on others. Its energy is high and is packed with emotional intensity that is toxic. If a mistake gets made, teach your team to own it. Blame is a behavior that is not acceptable on any terms. Feedback and constructive criticism are inevitable, but attaching shame to these moments quickly turns into a messy situation.
Lead by example in how you keep your word and commitment. This extends from simple behaviors of showing up on time for work and meetings to using the language of “I will” instead of “I’ll try”.
The measurement of metrics is not on the results, it’s on the delivery of their personal best each and every day you train them. Fostering this mindset will quash mediocrity. How do you train your team to reach their personal best?
Benefits of uncovering your blind spots represent significant opportunities for personal and professional growth. It takes courage to show up and give your personal best. After all, that is what you expect of your team. Lead with intention to support, inspire and motivate your team to success.
“Through awareness, you can be an advocate of change. Without awareness, there is no reason to change.” Robin Bush