What’s the most important leadership trait for successful leaders? Cornell & Stanford found it’s self-awareness.

“Leadership searches give short shrift to ‘self-awareness,’ which should actually be a top criterion. Interestingly, a high self-awareness score was the strongest predictor of overall success. This is not altogether surprising as executives who are aware of their weaknesses are often better able to hire subordinates who perform well in categories that the leader lacks acumen. These leaders are also more able to entertain the idea that someone on their team may have an idea that is even better than their own.”

After working with more than 500+ senior leaders, self-awareness is THE predictor of career success, the impact you can make and your ability to get buy-in and motivate.

Only 10-15% of leaders are self-aware, but 95% think they are. That causes most of the issues in organizations today. It’s not being addressed. Getting feedback is helpful, but it’s only one step.

The key is to understand your patterns and blind spots caused by learned behaviors stemming from childhood and/or adult trauma. For example, if you grew up in a home where no one listened to each other, it’s no surprise you don’t listen now.

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