We all have our blind spots, those things we either can’t see or choose not to see. These are behaviors that you mismanage and often become more intense and harder to manage during change and stressful situations. Let’s face it; blind spots can lead to shortfalls in our success as a leader or a team member.
Over the years coaching senior executives, I have found that there seems to be three themes around leadership blindside: Avoidance, Independence, and Acceptance.
Depending on your level of comfort the number one thing that leaders avoid are difficult conversations, which are generally related to an individual’s performance. And if you aren’t guilty of this, I know you know at least one person who is! And, when the conversation finally occurs the outcome is worse than if the conversation happened closer to the questionable performance.
Delivering bad news about company performance would be the second type of avoidance. Often the behavior displayed by a leader in these cases is a deafening silence and absence. Suddenly meetings start to become less frequent and reports are delivered late. Often a leader’s fear is driving this behavior. The leader has conversations in his mind of whom they might lose on their team and how it is going to impact them, or who will lose respect for him because of the bad results.
Another type of avoidance is change. The executive has identified a significant change that needs to be made, which will negatively impact employees. And instead of implementing the change, it is delayed and delayed again.
Independence can be displayed in a number of ways. This is the leader who has all the answers or believes that he should have all the answers. He thinks he is being paid to fix all the problems and has the right solution, so he doesn’t delegate properly. The result: team members aren’t growing to their full potential and often leave out of frustration.
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