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By leadership style, People, self-aware

What is one trait that makes a leader a great one? Their ability and willingness to reflect on their behavior and attitude to always improve. Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom, said Aristotle. For a leader, being self-aware is all about knowing their own strength and limitations, truly understanding their motivations and influences, and always being aware of their emotions and reactions. Self-awareness will empower a leader to manage themself better and lead others more effectively.

A leader’s style defines their approach to lead their team and the work culture they promote. Others will follow the leader’s approach and it is essential for the leader to be aware of the impact they have. A leader must reflect and adapt their approach based on their team’s characteristics and needs. Only a leader that has a high level of self-awareness can do so effectively.

Leadership style is shaped by the leader’s attitude, emotion, behavior, and belief. Recognizing their impact on others and working on them is critical to becoming an effective leader.

There are several positive outcomes of being a self-aware leader. It results in a confident, emotionally intelligent leader.

6 Characteristics of self-aware leaders

  1. Self-aware leaders are thoughtful: They develop a mindset of continuously reflecting on their actions, decision-making process, and communication.
  2. They are perceptive: They are aware of what is happening around them and pay attention to it. Because of this ability, self-aware leaders can foresee the outcome of different situations.
  3. They are considerate: They understand the needs of their teams and are empathetic toward them. They are also active listeners and are willing to change their behaviors based on feedback.
  4. They are modest: They recognize their own shortcomings and focus on continuous self-development.
  5. They have clarity: Being self-aware promotes better decision-making capabilities. It helps them to focus on what matters most and not get distracted easily.
  6. They are realistic: They are mindful of the skills and capabilities of the team and set their performance targets based on the team’s competencies.

How would you assess your self-awareness and continue to improve it? Develop leadership through self-awareness

5 steps to becoming a self-aware leader

  1. Get feedback: It is helpful to analyze how others react to your actions and words but for more in-depth feedback, you can ask them for direct feedback. Be sure you are accepting of others’ input and will take the time to reflect.


  1. Be observant: Analyze what behaviors, approach, and communication style results in a positive outcome and what does not. Learn from others’ reactions, be empathetic toward them and consider the impact on others when you make decisions.


  1. Recognize your strength: Once you understand the patterns, be aware of when you are most effective as a leader. Be conscious of your internal strengths and work to improve your emotional intelligence.


  1. Never stop reflecting: Without reflection, there is no self-awareness. It is a continuous process. People and situations will keep changing. It is important to continuously keep reflecting on your own actions and behavior.


  1. Record your traits and be open to learning: Document how you respond to different situations. Identify what evokes a positive response in you and what does not. Recognize your reactions to stress, challenges, and conflict. Look for patterns in your behavior. This analysis will support your efforts for strengthening skills that have a positive impact.

All of us are constantly making choices about how we behave in different situations and interacting with different people. These choices affect our relationships with others. Self-reflection is key to becoming self-aware of how we react and behave. It is looking into yourself to know your emotions, temperament, and sense of right and wrong. Recognizing your strengths and opportunities for growth, being aware of their impact on others, and managing them effectively is an essential part of becoming a great leader.




Aligning people with business strategy.

By Business Strategy, Consulting, Education, People, Performance, Training

For a business to succeed, it first needs a vision. Then comes strategy, which articulates the vision and provides direction for growth and performance.

A good business strategy aligns people and processes to drive performance. Alignment of different functions of an organization are essential for its success. At the heart of it is the organizational most important asset: its people.

Let’s focus on aligning people to strategy as it is the foundation for success.

People are the most important resource for an organization to achieve its objective. For people to perform well they need to feel connected, valued and motivated by the organization. Having high level of job satisfaction and commitment will result in organizational high performance.

For an organization to attract, foster and retain the best employees, it needs to align all of its Human Resources practices with the organizational strategy. Depending on the culture of the organization, the requirements of the job and the overall organizational strategy different Human resources management practices are required.

Committed and motivated people mirror the values of a business and its success. This intricate connection provides the best reason for a business to do everything possible to keep their employees aligned with its strategy. And be aware that talent is agile and mobile. It is always looking for fulfillment, growth, and recognition. To retain it, nurture it.

Here’s is a checklist to see if your business strategy is aligned with your people:

  • Are you utilizing your employees potential in your organization?
  • Do you have long term employees who are excited to work for your organization?
  • Are your employees your brand ambassadors?
  • Do your employees demonstrate the highest standard of customer service?
  • Do your employees work well as a team?
  • Do your employees initiative change to improve your organizational performance
  • Do you have a high degree of employee satisfaction and commitment?

Aligning people and strategy is by no means an easy and quick job. It required alignment between many functions. To do so a thorough analysis of the organizational strategy, current practices and ideal practices is requires.

People alignment and business strategy are not two distinct elements. They are intricately woven and must work in tandem to succeed. Here are a few areas you need to consider for a successful alignment.

5 things to achieve alignment between people and strategy

Recruitment and Selection

After an organization identifies the talent gap, the first step is recruitment and selection to close that gap. Recruitment starts with identifying the need for a new talent and ends with receiving qualified applications. Once the applications are received the selection process starts to identify the most qualified candidate who will succeed in the role. This process is guided by the organizational strategy.

Rewards and Compensation:

Once the right candidate has been identified, your organization needs to make an offer with the appropriate compensation to attract the candidate. Understanding different dimensions of compensation and adjusting it based on each employee’s needs is an important part of attracting the right talent. Further the compensation should be aligned with organizational strategy to drive the right behavior.

Performance appraisal and feedback

After an employee starts to work in the organization, the need to receive feedback on their performance. Everyone needs that pat on the back and it is critical for an organization to have a process to recognize individuals contribution. Further there are may ways to set goas for employees and hold them accountable to perform. Individual’s performance must be aligned with organizational goals and objectives.

Training and Development

Although most employees have completed the training and education necessary to qualify for a job, learning is an ongoing journey. In early stages the organization must provide job specific training to support the new employees’ performance. There after it is the responsibility of the employee and the organization to establish developmental plan for the employee to acquire skills necessary for the next role. This process is driven by the organizational overall strategy and vision.

Mentoring and empowering

For employees to succeed and thrive they need organizational support. Having a mentor or even a ‘buddy’ provides a sense of security for employees. For the mentors, it is the sense of achievement, fulfillment. For the mentee, it provides reassuring support because they feel that they have someone who can guide them and steer them in the right course. Furthermore, employees need to be empowered to develop the leadership skills necessary to succeed. This program has to support the organization strategy. By having the right guide, right from the start, the new hires get to understand and work with the strategy.