Is Lack of Self-Awareness Hurting You And Your Company?

According to a recent report by Korn Ferry, lack of self-awareness is damaging to your personal and corporate growth. Self-awareness is not a soft skill; it’s about leader effectiveness and plays out on your bottom line. Here are some interesting findings from David Zes and Dana Landis’ study A Better Return on Self-Awareness which analyzed 6977 self-assessments from professionals at 486 public companies to identify “blind spots” – disparities between self-reported skills and peer ratings. (It was reported by Kevin Cashman in he May 2014 issue of Leadership Excellence Essentials.)

  • Public companies who had higher rates of return (ROR) also had more professionals exhibiting higher levels of self-awareness.
  • Poorly performing companies’ employees had 20% more blind spots than those working at financially strong companies.
  • People with fewer blindspots had improved performance and greater satisfaction.

Why is this important for leaders? Because when we’re not self-aware people around us have a better sense of our strengths and weaknesses than we do, we lose credibility with them.

So to be a more effective leader, check your Emotional Intelligence (EQ). These tests focus on both self-awareness and how we relate to others. Both are important. Many times when I see leaders take the tests the focus is on how they relate to others, but these findings suggest it would be wise to focus internally as well – since we have greater control over changing our own level of awareness to avoid blind spots. It’s also something a good coach, such as your Vistage Chair can help you address!


If you’ve taken EQ tests and focused on improving your level of self-awareness, share your experiences!

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