New Year Reflections

As 2012 draws to a close, I thought I would share some areas I consider important for reflection. (Previous blog postings contain more on each area.)

Consider starting the year with your thoughts on what you wish your legacy as a leader to be.

  • Am I closer to being a “reflective” or “reflexive” leader? 
    • How often do I slow down to reflect?
    • Where is my balance between asking questions versus advocating my point of view?
    • Am I more often “in judgment” or “using judgment”?
  • Am I able to lead with heart and backbone? Able to empathize, support, and champion others while driving the mission?
    • Am I more likely to be described as strong or hard?
    • Do my followers want to invest fully in my vision – or are they fearful of the consequences of not following my directions?
  • Am I listening and present? 
    • Am I anxious to complete my colleagues’ thoughts and statements for them?
    • Can I listen for emotions and feelings? (Empathetic listening)
    • Do I consider the context or situations that surround them as they speak? (Contextual listening)
  • How authentic and believable am I as a leader?
    • Do my values and deeply held views show up in my leadership style?
    • Would I trust and believe in me if I was led by me?
    • How do I manage the loneliness that is part of authentic leadership? Is it more important to me to be liked, or to serve the highest agenda of the organization?
  • How do I lead under stress?
    • Do I filter stress, and am I able to retain my equanimity and composure?
    • Or, am I more likely to overuse my strengths and come across as disorganized, hurried, bullying, blaming…?
  • Do I carry a fixed or a growth mindset? 
    • Am I willing to risk lower performance in a new area? Or do I prefer to rest on the recognition and applause from past accomplishments?
    • Do I help create an environment for others to reach for higher ground?  Or are my actions leading others to be risk averse and settle for the fixed mindset?
    • What is the continuous improvement process for my leadership?  Do I dwell on the past, or do I learn and adjust my future actions?

What questions would you add to this list for others to consider?

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