How often as a business leader do you think about self awareness?
How often do you take a moment to look in the mirror and ask your self what don’t I know? What don’t I know about what’s going on in my business? What don’t I know about the industry? What skills don’t I have? What areas of my development or business do I have no desire to improve?
It’s a scary thing to be able to look in the mirror and admit that you don’t know something or what you are doing isn’t good enough?
If you’re going to succeed and really push past your competition you have to be willing to be brutally honest with yourself and embrace self awareness. You have to answer these questions and if your answers are honest, it will be the best conversation you can ever have with yourself.
Now that you have admitted or gained some self awareness, what should you do next?
- Document your answers. Talking in your head is great but get it down on paper. The act of writing or recording your answers adds to their credibility. The list becomes as roadmap for change.
- Pick ONE area to begin working on. As individuals we think we can master too many things. We can “multi-task”!!! A word that I think is total BS. By focusing on one aspect you can devote the time to make the change necessary.
- If the change is an improvement for yourself, then you need to be responsible enough to go and find either a mentor some education or solution to this problem. Assuming you can figure it out with your current level of information is foolish. You need something new to shock you out of your rut.
- If the change is removing a duty or task or responsibility from your plate, then you need to assign this task to someone but it is your responsibility to make sure they are trained correctly to handle the duty. Giving it to someone who is not skilled just kicks the can down the road. It does not fix anything.
One of the main reasons people do not want to go through this self awareness exercise is they have the feeling they are being weak. They feel they will be looked down upon because they should already know something or should be able to handle the responsibility.
I fully understand this struggle. I myself have hid my head in the sand, hoping no one would notice. Only everyone did notice and it was worse when the lack of skill reared its head.
The days of bluffing your way through meetings or sales pitches or how you are running a business are over. There is too much transparency in the workplace and people feel more comfortable in calling attention to a lack of effort or success.
It took me awhile to have that inner strength to stand up for myself, to say I did not know but I would learn. It has helped me understand what our company is good at, what partnerships are best and who to align myself with to fill in the gaps where their skills are superior to mine.
Do yourself a favor and look in the mirror. Ask the tough questions and then resolve to learn how to embrace your self awareness, adjust and move forward.