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March 24, 2014

Se7en Deadly Sins Blog Post Series: Sin #1 Myopia

sin 1 

You? The company’s point person for vision, shortsighted?  Sadly, it’s true. Leaders who are great at keeping the big picture in mind and tending to the minutiae of the business are often too focused on managing these pieces to lift their heads to see what the people around them—yes, those employees who are essential to achieving every company goal—are doing, thinking, and feeling. And more important still, while you had your head down, your door closed, or were assuming your team would figure things out by osmosis, they were grasping at the few communications you did share—whether in the form of an email, body language, or a raised voice—to make their own inferences and assumptions about company values and goals.

Is that really what you want?  It’s up to you to break out of your own world. To reflect on the message you are sending to your team through your communication—or lack thereof. The reality is everything a leader does communicates a message—whether you want it to or not.

Innies, take note!

Here’s why this is especially challenging for introverts: Introverts think they’re communicating more than they are. The quality of their communications is sound, but the quantity is lower than needed.

Outies, take note!

Here’s why this is especially challenging for extroverts: The quantity of their communication is high, but the quality is low. It’s common for extroverts to talk a lot without saying much that’s meaningful and credible. 

How well can you connect the dots?

Specifically the role of a leader is to:

  • Seek out and provide context and organizational information to ensure your team clearly understands how its priorities and goals fit into the organizations and the workgroup’s overall priorities and goals.
  • Make information relevant so every employee understands how he or she fits in
  • Provide job-related information so your team receives essential information to help them do their job effectively and will advocate on behalf of the organization.
  • Provide information and feedback on individual performance and other employee-related matters (e.g., recognition of achievements and contributions).

Are you forcing others to interpret and create your message for you?

 -David Grossman


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