Another week to explore the many sides of a Toxic workplace. This week, CPR explores additional attributes of a Toxic leader. Today, CPR's lens dissects the concept of self-awareness. First, it is essential to understand the definition of self-awareness. Oxford defines self-awareness as the conscious knowledge of one's character, feelings, motives, and desires. Self-awareness is a beautiful attribute to hone and develop whether you are in a leadership position. Studies illustrate that self-awareness improves communication, confidence, and job performance (Sutton et al., 2015), all attributes required for effective leadership. Additional proven attributes of self-awareness include:
More proactive, boost our acceptance, and encourage positive self-development (Sutton, 2016)
See things from the perspective of others, practice self-control, work creatively and productively, and experience pride in ourselves and our work as well as general self-esteem (Silvia & O’Brien, 2004)
Better decision-making (Ridley, Schutz, Glanz, & Weinstein, 1992)
For leaders, self-awareness may also signify how we show up, and do we do so in a way that enables others to show up? Claire Bremmer (2020) from Myers Briggs offered tips for building self-awareness:
Ask for feedback from those who care and can be critical and honest.
Seek out mentorship and support from different people relating to areas where you want to grow
Take context into account and notice patterns.
Reflect (often!) by asking what rather than why questions
Reframe “I can’t do that” to “I can’t do that yet.”
Remember that self-awareness is not a finite attribute but an ongoing process.
On the flip side, research (Schumer, 2019) points to a leader's lack of self-awareness as the main culprit associated with organizational distress. This leader is unaware of their character, feelings, motives, and desires, contributing to organizational toxicity. When you lack self-awareness, self-reflection and introspection no longer exist. Without self-reflection, leaders are unaware of their surroundings; they operate with inflated egos, which can be costly. Typically, the leader does not view the world objectively, resulting in error. A leader who is not self-aware is likely to cultivate a work environment that is not conducive to constructing high-performance teams and promoting a more cohesive work environment. As a leader, electing self-awareness=self-correct is a move that is guaranteed to create an organizational shift paving the way towards improvement.
For leadership coaching, reach out to CPR LLC via email at email@example.com.