The Key Missing Piece

I just know somehow that you are a good leader. You enjoy what you do, you get results, and you work hard to develop the relationships that will allow you to have an impact on your organization and beyond. I know that if you make the effort to read this blog, you are trying your best to get better at what you do.

Yet, there is something missing in your leadership. A seemingly small, but at the same time, enormous thing you need to include in your quest to get better at what you do. It’s the key piece that is missing in your ability to soar as a leader.

Imagine that your influence becomes magical. That followers feel included, that office politics no longer dominate interactions, and that results come with greater ease. I’ve seen it happen, all because a leader discovered how to truly see others.

In fact, a powerful tool in your leadership tool kit needs to be seeing others. The greatest gift you can give to yourself and your followers is this gift level of attention that requires a profound focus on the other person. It demands that you listen deeply and suspend judgment. It asks that you see the other person as they are, seeking to understand them in a way that you haven’t yet.

The interesting thing is how simple – but how difficult this is. It’s definitely worth practicing, because the benefits can be the following:

Attunement: Like an orchestra tuning up for a masterful concert, when we are attuned to another, we harmonize. A symphony of purposeful lucidity and congruence in action can occur. Through purposeful attention you will find yourself leading others with grace in the direction of shared objectives and goals. It’s not that there isn’t discord; there is, but when we truly see others, we are able to coach them to return to the melody with greater ease.

Ripples: A funny thing happens when you begin to see others; it spreads. They begin to see others, who also begin to see others. Can you conceive of an entire organization that sees each other in a way that they haven’t before? If not, go back and read the above section on attunement.

Acceptance: When you stop judging others you begin to see them as they are. If you look and listen well enough, you’ll see that they are very much like you. It’s quite intriguing how this works. When we really focus on hearing others and seeing them as human beings (rather than objects), with frailties quite often the same as our own, we can create alliances, form friendships, and get things done in a way that we haven’t before.

Results: By now, you’ll see where I’m going. When we are attuned, create ripples, and accept others as they are, there is magic. Results happen because people are hard wired for connection, understanding, and belonging. And all of these things help them to work as a unit and achieve results.

So, move away from your computer, put away your cell phone, stop the distractions. Face the person who needs to be seen and listen deeply. You’ll be surprised what a difference it makes.

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Mary Jo Asmus is the founder and President of Aspire Collaborative Services LLC, an executive coach, writer, internationally recognized thought leader, and a consultant who partners with organizations of all kinds to develop and administer coaching programs. She has “walked in your shoes” as a former leader in a Fortune company.


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