Friday check up:
Reminder of our challenge: Every day, instead of covering up your weaknesses admit one or two, and meet the vulnerability of others with every ounce of support and tact you can muster.
Remember that vulnerability, one of humankind’s least favorite words, can be a very intimidating thing. Unless someone knows how to deal with a vulnerable comment, you can often times leave a situation overanalyzing what you said, “Maybe I shouldn’t have admitted to my team that I’m not a great communicator! Maybe they’re all talking about me…”
Being vulnerable is something that, unless received well, can be paralyzing. However, vulnerability allows for others to see us as humans, and for them to feel comfortable being human around us. Now you may think that this is a terrible idea. You need professionals on your left and right as you perform that surgery, help your patients, and lead your team. This is understandable, but remember, the great leaders in history were often great because they recognized their weaknesses, and focused on their strengths. As a leader it is your job to recognize not only your own strengths and weaknesses but also those of your team members. Focus on their strengths. This will make your team not only professional, but immensely more enjoyable. Vulnerability handled with care creates trust. Let it start with you. Try to see your team members in-person when confronting things instead of hiding behind an email. Make an effort to be present in their lives, so they feel comfortable in talking to you about the problem. Leaders know the problem before it becomes a problem, and that comes when you facilitate a safe zone of vulnerability. Connect, appreciate and be human. These three principles will be your greatest allies to become the leader your team can trust.
Beyond Reason, the capstone book of Roger Fisher’s amazing career in conflict resolution, is the source of the information in this blog-post.