How do people see you?
In the quest to become an influential leader you will wonder how people and especially those you lead see you. And chances are good that others’ perceptions of you will differ in important and disconcerting ways from how you see yourself.
Others’ perceptions of you will be impacted in part by your ability to exert influence. How are your words and actions perceived and understood? Do you know if your team trusts you? And what do they expect from you? These are important questions to get answers to if you want to exert the influence you want.
Getting answers to those questions might not be an easy task … According to an article in Harvard Business Review there are a few ways to do just that:
Establish real, ongoing human connections − Are you able to have a real conversation with those around you and are you able to agree and respectfully disagree and discuss differences. With real connections, you will be able to uncover others’ thoughts and feelings about you as a leader.
Seek out perceptions and perspectives in the context of something specific − Asking broad, general questions might make others feel threatened, so rather develop a habit of ‘checking in’ with your team and the beginning and end of a specific task or project. At the start ask what they hope to achieve and what they need from you. And at the end, you can ask if they achieved what they wanted to. Use those conversations as a setting for a candid discussion.
Build a network of people who will give you candid feedback − It should be people you trust and have ongoing relationships – these should not be people that work for you.
This month in ASA we pay tribute to the impact that Chantyl Mulder had on the profession and those around her. Her name may have become synonymous with education and training in the accounting profession, but when she started out, she never imagined that her impact will last many lifetimes and the legacy she leaves behind is something that many aspire to. She leaves a spirit of perseverance and determination with others to ensure the profession upholds the highest standards and continues to shape its path forward.
Editor: Accountancy SA