There are things in life that we are good at and we know it. There are things in life that we struggle with and are aware of. And there are also the things that limit us, and the way others see us, that we don’t even know about: our blind spots.
Just the other day, I was speaking to a senior leader who didn’t feel heard when sitting among her peers. As she was telling me about her issue, she was leaning across the table and appeared to be begging for me to listen to her. Naturally, she didn’t realize she was doing this. But if she was doing it with me, she has most likely been adopting the very same pleading body language with her peers.
On another occasion, I was working with a gentleman who was talking to me about his boss and during the entire conversation he rolled his eyes. When he finished speaking, I asked if he was aware of what he had been doing. Needless to say, he was not aware in the slightest.
At a conference I once attended, a female director approached me to talk about her inability to connect with decision-makers. Her boss told her that if she didn’t change, she’d be out of a job. Here’s a fact that may not surprise you at this point: she didn’t make eye contact with me through the whole conversation, which of course helped me understand exactly what she was doing at work.
How do you go about changing what you don’t even know you’re doing?
Here are a few tips:
- Determine how you want to be known. What are the words you want to own in the minds of your audience? Think about the behaviors you need to engage in to create your desired impression.
- Ask for feedback. You want to ask only those whose opinion you value. Which of your peers behave in a way that you admire or align with what you want? Who do you trust to provide you with honest feedback for change and not tell you what you want to hear?
- Be specific. Explain exactly the information you are looking for. People want to help though you need to make it easy for them and ensure you get the feedback you need to change.
For example: I want to establish a more confident presence in meetings and easily command the attention of others when I speak. I would appreciate feedback based on your observations, good or bad, in how I am coming across.
- Hire a coach. This is an option if you are not getting the results you want and are willing to invest in making change quickly. There is no better way than to work with a professional.
If you are interested in playing bigger, and getting out of your own way, it is essential to uncover those blind spots to achieve that higher level of success.
Dorothy Lazovik works with leaders to skyrocket their confidence, establish their credibility and get them noticed. She is a sought after Personal Brand Strategist, Executive Coach, Leadership Trainer and Speaker.
Dorothy works with leaders across different industries to emerge top in their field. She provides them with the tools they need to build a powerful authentic personal brand and live a more meaningful life. To learn more about Dorothy go to www.authenticleadersedge.com