When was the last time you reviewed your leadership principles?
Recently I was having a virtual meeting with a friend, Dio Saucedo. Dio holds a PhD in Educational Psychology and regularly works with professional athletes to improve their performances.
One vignette Dio shared was as follows…
During a coaching session he asked his elite athlete clients to consider how much time each day they spent on improving their physical performance. For example, for baseball players, improving the batting. The clients said they spent an hour or two on improving their physical performance.
Dio then asked the clients how much time they spent on improving the mental performance. He suggested several time options but in the end, the athletes agreed the amount of time spent on mental performance improvement was, just 3 minutes.
Why do I mention this?
Consider how much time you spend working on improving your mental performance/mindset. And specifically consider how much time you spend reflecting on, and being clear about, your leadership principles.
Here are incisive questions to reflect on from pp. 164-165 of the stellar book, The Book of Beautiful Question, so you’re clear on your leadership principles.
- When have I been at my best?
- What drove or inspired me at those times?
- What have I learned about working with other people (in doing so, when have I been effective, and what caused that?)
- When have I taken a principled stand?
- What have I gone out of my way to defend?
In the book, billionaire investor and hedge fund manager, Ray Dalio’s approach to finding his principles is mentioned. Dalio maintains he found many of his principles from studying his mistakes.
Question you can ask yourself in this area include:
- When have I failed to effectively meet goals or lead others – and what did I seem to be doing wrong?
- When did I fail to take a stand – and why?
- When have I come up short and why?
Own the Conversation
Here’s a suggestion for action:
- Choose one of the above questions.
- Schedule a 12 minute appointment with yourself to reflect on the question.
- Store your reflections – perhaps in a My leadership principles folder.
If the appointment was worthwhile schedule another one.
p.s. To be on the cutting edge you need an edge to cut with. That edge is your belief in yourself – sharp and ready to go.