Leaders at any level, whether CIO, CTO or even lower management, need to have a firm grasp of their team’s pulse, as a result it is important for all leaders to have tremendous self-awareness. It is important for a leader to have a good accounting of their own strengths and weaknesses drawing on strengths when necessary and avoiding pitfalls of their weaknesses when confronted by them.
Leaders must be able to take a complete inventory of the perception of themselves within their team(s). All too often leaders don’t take this important step, preventing them from being as successful as leaders who accurately utilize introspection and awareness. Without being insecure, leaders must be able to use this inventory to ensure they are providing their teams with meaningful leadership, direction, vision and emotional intelligence; guiding them towards success and solidly supporting and empowering employees.
Another key component of leadership having exceptional self-awareness is to always be cognizant of ensuring leaders never blame others for team or department failures. I’ve heard it said one of the simplest keys to being a great leader, and having highly performing teams, is to avoid personalizing failures and actively share successes with your team. Self Awareness is also integral to another key concept previously discussed: building successful teams. A leader needs to be aware of their deficits to ensure they build teams with complementary strengths, in order to be as complete and diverse as possible. Leaders who are not-self aware, or actively taking inventory of their strengths and weaknesses are susceptible to failure in the blind spots. It is crucial to constantly be aware of how your attitude, actions and leadership affects others.
For the next several months, a new post will be released with another key characteristic of what it takes to be successful in technology leadership. These posts are in no particular order; I’d love for you to provide feedback and let me know if you think I’m missing something, or if you’d like to see a particular trait addressed please feel free to contact me, or leave a comment. I’m hoping this will be a useful dialogue about what is necessary to become a successful technology leader.
Mike is an experienced audio video and information technology specialist, with 5 years experience in AV/IT; and previous experience in Pro Audio including full-time touring experience. Mike is active in InfoComm, the Audiovisual Industry Association, and serves on the Technology Managers Council and the Certification Committee. Check out Mike’s website http://mikebrandesav.com/ and Follow him on Twitter.