Leadership is a demanding role that requires a keen sense of self-awareness and the ability to make sound judgments. However, not all leaders possess the invaluable quality of accurate self-assessment. Did you know that Harvard Business Review recently published research stating that,
"95% of leaders think they have accurate self assessment but only 10% actually do!"
From the pitfalls of ego-driven decision-making to the erosion of trust within teams, we uncover the dangers that arise when leaders fail to see themselves accurately.
1. The Illusion of Invincibility:
Leaders who lack accurate self-assessment often fall victim to the illusion of invincibility. Their inflated egos and overcompensating behaviors blind them to their own limitations and weaknesses. Instead of seeking feedback and embracing constructive criticism, they surround themselves with people who feed their ego or who are afraid to shed any constructive criticism on them.
2. Ineffective Communication:
Have you ever heard a team member or friend say,"This is just who I am! I'm being honest!"
Honesty without compassion is cruelty.
Accurate self-assessment is crucial for effective communication, as it allows leaders to understand their own communication styles, strengths, and weaknesses. Leaders who lack this awareness may unintentionally come across as unempathetic, dismissive, or unclear. They may fail to listen attentively, undervalue diverse perspectives, and struggle to build meaningful connections with their teams. Consequently, their communication becomes a barrier rather than a bridge to success.
3. Failure to Learn from Mistakes:
Leaders who lack accurate self-assessment often struggle to learn from their mistakes. They may deflect blame onto others, refuse to acknowledge their own missteps, and repeat the same errors without recognizing the patterns. Ownership is not a strong characteristic for leaders who have major blindspots! Without the humility to acknowledge their own fallibility, these leaders miss out on valuable learning opportunities and hinder their personal and professional growth.
4. Impact on Organizational Culture:
Leaders set the tone for organizational culture, and leaders with flawed self-assessment can contribute to toxic work environments. A culture of competition, fear, and a lack of psychological safety becomes the norm and you often hear phrases like, "It doesn't matter what I say they're not going to listen anyway! or Nothing will change so what's the point!"
Innovation is stifled, and employees may become disengaged or actively disenchanted, leading to high turnover rates and a loss of valuable talent.
It is essential for leaders to cultivate self-awareness, embrace feedback, and continually strive for personal growth, just like they expect their team to do so. Only then can they truly inspire and empower those they lead, ensuring the long-term success of both themselves and their organizations.
So...is your assessment of yourself accurate? If you're curious that's a great sign, if you're not, well, that may be a red flag for some serious blindspots.
Want to learn more about how soft skills and leadership coaching, training, and development can support your team and company? Grab an informative call here with the Rise Up For You, SHRM-CP, SHRM-SCP team.