(See the full article online at Blind spots about our own leadership excellence.The following are excerpts.)
Two important blind spots about excellence concern: (1).our personal strengths and (2) how we get things done “Amazingly few people know how they get things done. This may be an even more important question than ‘What are my strengths?’” (Peter F. Drucker in Managing Oneself Harvard Business Review, January , 2005)
Examining stories about successful leadership interventions is an immediate way to capture information relative to these blind spots. But, without careful active listening from another person, I find leaders (including myself when I was an organizational leader) often recount events in such perfunctory ways that it is hard to capture specifics about strengths or actions. Without help from a colleague, friend or coach, it is very hard to see ourselves clearly in the midst of day-to-day action.
Even if a leader gains such clarity, it is easily lost in the midst of continuously difficult and complex situations. As a result, blind spots about our excellence tend to recur under stress. It helps to have other people's "eyes" on a regular basis to regain specific awareness about what we have done well. This renews energy to stay the course with the actions needed for success.