How healthy is your leadership pipeline? Do you know who would replace you if you left tomorrow? The question of leadership development and continuity is an ever-present challenge for organizations in any industry.
Transforming team communication is a difficult task. Just look around your office and think about how many different thought processes, leadership approaches, and communication styles are represented. Most days, fostering seamless communication between so many different people while working hard to raise up good leaders feels more like herding cats than it does leading a team.
One of those “soft science” buzzwords.
You can hear it now, can’t you? The impassioned HR director energetically extolling the cure-all virtues of “open dialogue,” “honest communication,” and “high performing teams” who learn how to “understand” their teammates and “bring out the best” in every “unique voice.”
Self-preservation occurs when you obsess about protecting the things you are afraid of losing.
Your job. Your authority. Your salary. Your bonus. Your title.
Your carefully curated image.
The silent underminers of influence. They take us to a dangerous precipice of misattribution and blinded action. On the surface, they seem solid and reliable. After all, the very definition indicates a certain level of certainty about a conclusion, whether based on past experience or ignorance of additional facts and perspectives.
Assumptions Undermine Influence
But it’s that foundation that makes assumptions so dangerous. They often lead us to make hasty, misinformed, or potentially offensive judgments without seeing the true situation clearly.
If you look back at your own journey, it will probably surprise you how many leadership snafus or personal mistakes have come from misplaced assumptions. Success, greatness, breakthrough, liberation, and overall personal or relational peace are all at risk when we assume.
So, because a “Stop Doing” list is just as crucial as a “Start Doing” list, here are 20 things you should refrain from assuming in the future (in no particular order).
20 Things to Stop Assuming
- Don’t assume it’s a simple task and others should just “get it.”
- Don’t assume asking for help will harm your credibility.
- Don’t assume gossip is accurate! Better yet, just stay away from gossip. (Tweet This)
- Don’t assume if they read “this” book, they will change.
- Don’t assume they don’t feel entitled to all that you give.
- Don’t assume your awards, your numbers, and your things prove you are a great leader.
- Don’t assume everyone will love you if your plan succeeds.
- Don’t assume your idea will motivate others if you haven’t taken the time to know them.
- Don’t assume they won’t value your view or opinion.
- Don’t assume their annoying behavior will go away on its own.
- Don’t assume they are ready to jump on your objective without a “good morning” and cup of coffee first.
- Don’t assume their intent based on their Facebook post.
- Don’t assume your family sees how much you love them based on how hard you work. Tell them.
- Don’t assume your kids love it just because you do.
- Don’t assume they’ll just say no.
- Don’t assume your vote doesn’t matter.
- Don’t assume they won’t embrace the card, the letter, or the apology.
- Don’t assume things will never change.
- Don’t assume you can’t start over.
- Don’t assume you’re in good health. Be proactive, manage routines, and go to the doctor.
Oh, there’s one more.
If you just skimmed this and assumed none of them pertain to you, you better read it again.
Wishing you all the best!
This was originally posted by Dan Frey, Senior Associate with GiANT Worldwide, and I wanted to share it here as well.
If you’re interested in learning more about how assumptions can affect your leadership, we’re happy to schedule a meeting to discuss. Just click the contact button and let us know!
Each of our leadership styles are framed on a foundation shaped by personal experience, nurture, and learning. We have all picked up good and bad habits from those who have led us and we inevitably learn certain leadership skills in school, through informal reading, blogs, news, etc.
Have you ever thought, however, that there may be different foundations of leadership?
Different philosophies that take you in different directions?
Have you ever heard someone, maybe even yourself, say this:
“If they’re not for us, they’re against us?”
It was an early morning, dark with a glint of frost in the air. John was quietly packing up his briefcase for another week’s trek through the jungle maze of traffic on the way to his downtown office, careful to not wake up his family in the process… Read more
These days everyone seems to be preaching about the importance of employee engagement…and they should be. An overwhelming amount of research details the crucial role engagement plays in improving workplace morale, productivity, healthy culture, bottom line, retention, and more. The list goes on and on.
Healthy team growth begins with knowledge, self-awareness, camaraderie, and shared values.
Once you begin to truly know your teammates – what drives their lifestyle and priorities, what affects them inside and outside the office, what they value – you will start to feel a natural interest in the things that help them grow as leaders and people.
The GiANT IDEA