(630 words = 4.8-minute read)
# 1 – Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) are principles and values that organizations use to meet the needs of people from all walks of life. Embracing DEI isn’t just the right thing to do morally; it also offers numerous benefits for organizations.
# 2 – Your responsibility – begin by focusing on yourself. Uncover your own biases and notice how they prevent you from embracing DEI. Integrate DEI into discussions and decisions.
# 3 – How to affect your culture – implement strategies to attract diverse talent, review hiring processes for biases, and ensure a diverse slate of candidates for every position. Embrace DEI as a core value.
Three New Ideas
For this edition, I want to discuss the leadership challenge of developing yourself and your leadership effectiveness. Strap in, and let’s get to work!
# 1 – If You Don’t Know Where You Are At…
The first step to accelerating your personal and leadership development is understanding yourself completely. Most people have a challenge knowing who they are in the eyes of others. Have you ever over-rated or under-rated yourself compared to other people’s ratings? A third of leaders new to 360-degree assessments often have this problem.
For leaders, how others perceive our strengths and opportunities matters. Choosing the right skills to develop should be based on an understanding of how others perceive our strengths and weaknesses. You should seek out a valid assessment that has been fully researched and provides 360-degree feedback. Knowing what skills to develop is essential to successful development.
Ask Yourself: How good are my leadership skills? How can I validate my assessment?
# 2 – Create Superpowers
Building your strengths is more important than only fixing your weaknesses. Perfection is not a worthwhile objective. The perfect leader does not exist. In fact, we know that “extraordinary” leaders as measured by the best leadership assessment company in the world; Zenger Folkman, are people who have five tremendous (“Profound”) leadership skills. Oh by the way, more than likely, they have some weaknesses. They are not perfect. Therefore, you are better off creating a leadership superpower than fixing a leadership weakness. It is your strengths that people will acknowledge you for – if they are profound. And they will give you grace for the things you are not great at.
When you are an average or good leader (no significant strengths), and you commit a leadership mistake, you probably say to yourself: “I shouldn’t have done that”. Unfortunately, this can become the focus of your leadership development – stop making that mistake. While this seems completely normal, it can be a waste of time if it is the onlything that you do.
Strength-based development means selling out to developing your strengths into superpowers. Do this, and the mistakes you make will be less painful.
Ask Yourself: What leadership strength do I have that could be developed into a superpower?
# 3 – Practice & Reflection Cycles
Every professional sports team videotapes their games & practices and then evaluates them to see what they can improve. Outstanding leaders are no different. They also practice leadership and then review their game films. The only difference is that the game film exists in their mind, not on video. That’s where reflection comes into play – if you don’t force your brain to look at and evaluate what you did, you won’t learn from your practice.
Becoming a great leader is possible for everyone. You must know what strengths you can leverage into superpowers and then practice using those strengths as often as possible. When you combine reflection and evaluation of your practice, you will have a fail-safe way to learn, grow and change!
Ask Yourself: How can I practice a leadership skill every week and reflect on what I learned from my practice?
Want to Know More?
- BEST BOSS EVER! – The 5 steps to rapidly develop yourself into the leader everyone wants to follow.
- 8-Minute Strengths Assessment by Zenger Folkman
- The New Extraordinary Leader, 3rd Edition: Turning Good Managers into Great Leaders by John Zenger, Joseph Folkman
- Please forward this newsletter to a friend or colleague you respect. Thank you!