Leadership Awareness Strategy: Reflective Inquiry

Photo credit: Samantha Pomerantz

Leadership leverage relies on awareness, and the skill of knowing when and how to expand awareness in yourself and others. Self-awareness is useful and relevant to cultivate and enhance as a leader, but have you thought about how you might help those you lead to increase their self awareness?

Here’s how: To evoke self awareness engage yourself and others with expansive, reflective questions around what’s possible or what might be possible. Here are a few to get you started:

  • What is your experience of (x situation)?
  • How might you like that experience to be different next time?
  • If you could have your ideal solution, what would that look like?
  • How would you know if it worked?
  • Who do you want to be in the matter of x?
  • What might serve you better?
  • Is there anything you need to let go of?
  • How might you create space for yourself?
  • What permission do you need?
  • What support would help you most right now?
  • What gifts/information is that feeling telling you? What information is that emotion providing?
  • What choices would you like to make?
  • What’s in the way of that?
  • What do you notice/ observe about what you did there that worked?
  • If you could bottle it for future use, what mindset or belief or set of actions served you best in that scenario?
  • What do you notice?

When helping an employee, try deeply listening to their experience or story and guide them in a reflective inquiry and a gentle exploration of what’s possible to create some freedom or space or open up something new for them.

Want to know more about how awareness can help with leadership influence? Of course self-awareness and self-management as a leader is key. Love this article by Tasha Eurich in Harvard Business Review about What Self-Awareness Really Is (and How to Cultivate It). Also, I wrote a blog post a few years ago that may help: Leadership Shifts for Authentic Influence.

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