Look to your past
This week's Tuesday Reading, "To Strengthen Your Confidence, Look To Your Past", comes from Amy Jen Su and Muriel Maignan Wilkins. Su and Wilkins are co-founders and managing partners of Isis Associates, an executive coaching and leadership development firm. They are also co-authors of "Own the Room: Discover Your Signature Voice to Master Your Leadership Presence." The essay first appeared in the Harvard Business Review Blog.
Among the attributes that all leaders need is confidence - not too much so as to be blinded by benign overly confidence and not too little to feel inadequate.
Su and Wilkins suggest a three step plan to strengthen your confidence. They note that confidence is a dynamic, and not a static, emotion and that, similar to a physical muscle, confidence needs exercise to grow confidence. A leader's confidence requires continuous attention:
Face the Facts. Over the years you have built a track record, those priceless lessons from the successes and failures represent an inventory of what has happened on your journey. What you have done can serve as a counter-weight to your fears of the future, fears of change, of failure, of being inadequate to the task.
Focus. Everyone's competencies fall into three categories high, average, and a few that are weak. Successful leaders focus on leveraging their strengths and manageing their average and weak areas. The goal is to build strengths and do any work necessary in the average and weak areas so that these don't impact your overall effectiveness.
Faith. The Latin root of "confidence" is "con fidere," which translates to "with faith." Faith is belief in the unseen. Leaders create vision and change for the future out of the uncertain. They operate through faith that helps give purpose, strength, and trust to the path they develop.
Work to spend time this week strengthening your confidence "muscle" and take opportunities to put the confidence you develop into action.
. . . jim