To master the softer side of leadership, acquire this tool:

You have just been promoted to a leadership role. Quick – where can you turn to brush up on leadership skills when there is a new leadership book, article, or blog post everywhere you look? What to do when there are myriads of choices when it comes to leadership training, coaching, or development?

How can one learn to become a “better” leader when the definition itself can feel so broad?

This article from Fast Company calls leadership, “the eight wonder of the world…better seen and felt than defined and said”.

So then, what one tool must a leader have in his or her toolbox to succeed at what Fast Company calls, “The Softer Side of True Leadership?”…

Self-awareness.

Yes some people naturally have more self-awareness than others, but luckily this is a muscle that can be strengthened with practice and patience through training that reinforces leadership as being about “we”, and no longer just “me”.

Here are some tips to consider:

  1.  Do more listening than speaking – make sure others feel heard
  2. Understand leaders are constantly being watched – your actions, speech and tone is being mirrored by those who support and report to you.
  3. Become an expert at body language. Pay attention to non-verbal communication and body language cues.  It’s more powerful than many of us realize.
  4. Ask questions – stay connected and curious to what’s happening on the office floor.
  5. Become more present and in the moment by increasing focus and mindfulness.

One way that Applied Improvisation training increases our self-awareness is by reminding us  “everything is an offer”. On stage, everything we do or say is an “offer” that is accepted and used in the scene by our partners.

Therefore, learning how our words, actions, and tone affects a scene and our partner makes us much more aware of not only our choices on stage but the choices of others.

I encourage you to connect and share this post with one colleague to continue the conversation….

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1 Comment

  1. Pingback: What’s the drill – March 19: Defining leadership with a 2 minute video « Tools for Navigating Business Without a Script

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