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March 2, 2023 | Klein Consultants
Effective leadership is essential for the success of any organization. However, many managers fail to recognize th potential pitfalls in their behavior, which can lead to disastrous consequences for the company. Behavioral awareness is the key to identifying and addressing these pitfalls, and it is an essential skill for any manager.
Behavioral awareness is the ability to recognize and understand one’s own behavioral patterns, as well as those of others, and how they affect work interactions and relationships. It involves being aware of one’s own personality traits, strengths, weaknesses, and blind spots, as well as understanding how these traits can affect communication, decision-making, and overall job performance. Additionally, having behavioral awareness means being able to recognize and adapt to the behavioral styles of others in order to build strong and effective working relationships. This skill is particularly important for managers, as they are responsible for leading and directing teams towards organizational goals, and effective communication and teamwork are essential for success.
Developing self-awareness in the workplace is a fundamental aspect of emotional intelligence. It involves gaining a deeper understanding of our emotions, feelings, and mental well-being, all of which significantly impact our daily thoughts, actions, and behavior in the workplace. By enhancing our self-awareness, we can better recognize our strengths, weaknesses, and areas for improvement, and thus, improve our overall job performance and build more productive relationships with colleagues.
Let’s face it, everyone has strengths and weaknesses associated with their personality traits, and recognizing and leveraging them can help individuals operate at their full potential. On the other hand, ignoring these traits can lead to self-sabotage and harm to those around us. This is doubly true when it comes to positions of leadership. Without an understanding of their behavioral blind spots, managers can create havoc in their organizations, resulting in the departure of valuable employees, delayed production, and process failures.
To address this problem, managers need to be taught how to best utilize their own behavioral traits and those of their employees for success. The team assessments offered by Klein Consultants can help identify potential pitfalls where employment candidates may not necessarily exhibit the behavioral awareness necessary to succeed in a given role.
A case in point is the story of a CEO who hired a “Type A Personality” Director of Operations. Although the manager produced immediate results, his aggressive nature eventually caused chaos in the organization. He began steamrolling other employees who valued boundaries and processes, resulting in his removal and the need for some serious damage control. This situation could have been avoided if CEO had received a filtered list of applicants that fit the ideal behavioral awareness profile.
Another scenario that highlights the importance of behavioral awareness is when an employee is not performing well. If a manager is afraid of hurting the employee’s feelings, they may avoid correcting the situation. This can lead to other employees compensating for the underachiever, causing frustration and resentment towards management.
When hiring and promoting employees, it is essential to utilize behavioral awareness. Creating job models to identify what the position entails and what is required is critical to selecting the right candidate. For example, a position that requires monitoring processes and paperwork may require someone with a high level of patience and a need for order, while a position that requires pushing a team to new heights may require someone with a strong drive and likable personality.
It is also important to consider behavioral compatibility when hiring. If a manager has little patience, they may have difficulty working with someone who likes to take their time before making decisions. Although behavioral differences may complicate a working relationship, there are situations where hiring someone with different traits can be beneficial, particularly if the manager struggles with a particular aspect of their job.
When hiring for leadership positions, companies often focus on technical skills and experience while neglecting the importance of evaluating behavioral traits that could affect job performance.
For example, a candidate may have impressive experience and qualifications, but if they lack emotional intelligence or have poor communication skills, they may struggle to effectively manage and motivate a team. If a company overlooks these red flags during the hiring process, they may end up with an executive who is unable to inspire their team, foster a positive work culture, and drive the organization towards success.
Furthermore, when leaders lack self-awareness and ignore their own behavioral blind spots, it can create a ripple effect throughout the organization. They may unknowingly exhibit negative behavior, such as micromanagement or dismissiveness, that can cause employees to become disengaged, frustrated, and ultimately leave the organization. This can lead to a loss of productivity, decreased morale, and a negative impact on the bottom line.
Ignoring the importance of behavioral awareness at the management level can have catastrophic consequences that trickle down to affect everyone in the organization. To identify leading traits, motivators, and behavioral traits, managers can take the basic personality assessment offered by Klein Consultants. The information gleaned from this assessment can be used to make informed decisions when hiring and promoting employees.