The fourth question in this seven-part series is focused on the level of awareness you have about what is going on in your organization. One of the most frustrating things that team members encounter occurs when they have a leader who is seemingly oblivious to organizational challenges. Often these challenges include personnel issues, internal politics, confusion about priorities, and low productivity. When a leader demonstrates aloofness to these challenges, employees begin to lose trust and start to question the inaction of their leader. This can be a source of immense frustration and discouragement for team members.
What causes a leader to lack awareness? Ultimately the issue is engagement, or lack thereof. Leaders must be engaged with their people and the important aspects of their organization. Unfortunately, some leaders are detached from the people that make their organization run, and as a result they become ignorant of the challenges and issues their employees are facing. This is a recipe for an unhealthy organization.
On other hand, an aware leader is always in tune with what’s happening in the organization. They make it a point to get out of their office to be visible, and they are also intentional about spending time with their team members. These are two of the most important things a leader can do to improve their level of awareness about the organization.
An aware leader is also proactive in addressing challenges. It is one thing to be aware of challenges; it is another thing to take corrective action. Leaders must demonstrate that they are willing to address challenges, which may often require them to make some difficult decisions or implement unwelcome changes.
How would you characterize your level of awareness regarding your organization and people? If this is hard for you to answer, then you probably need to get out of your office more, spend time with your team, and check the pulse of your organization.