When you are a leader, you go head first into battle, experience joy, success, hurt, failure and disappointment.
Contrary to popular belief, being prone to forgiveness does not make you a weak leader or doesn’t mean that you have forgotten.
Forgiving someone who has harmed you is some way is difficult because you might think that you are giving them a pass, that you are being weak, you are giving in too easily, giving them your power, you don’t love or respect yourself.
Actually, by not forgiving they are holding power over you because nursing negative emotions is only harming you.
Wondering how important is forgiveness in leadership and how to forgive?
The benefits of forgiveness
Forgiveness is a powerful and efficient tool.
Forgiveness is an often overlooked, undervalued gift but it requires strength, character, emotional intelligence and self awareness. Forgiveness is an active process.
It allows you to reach a state of inner calm to put negative memories at rest and get rid of negative emotions. Indeed, after forgiving, you feel re-energized, empowered, free and present.
In addition, forgiveness helps to resolve conflicts, move forward, promote creativity, build trust and relationships.
Lack of forgiveness in the workplace can heavily affect employee morale, retention, productivity, satisfaction, innovation and cohesion. It can create a toxic workplace.
How to forgive?
People have different values and motives in life. They would not hesitate to hurt you to get what they want, to shift blame and judge. To forgive:
Avoid shifting blame. Take accountability for your actions and take back control of your emotions. When you forgive, you are no longer a victim nor do you become a persecutor.
Acknowledge what has happened, be compassionate with yourself and give yourself time to recover.
Own and learn from your mistakes before you make them again.
Remember that you cannot control the behavior of others and you can only control yours.
In the words of Don Miguel Ruiz in The Four Agreements, don’t take it personally. It is hard to cope when someone’s anger is directed at you. However, their bad behavior has nothing to do with you but everything to do with their insecurities or they are doing the best with the tools that they have.
See an opportunity to grow and see this as a challenge.
Understand that all situations can be resolved. Do what you can, if you can, to repair the situation. If you need to talk it through, have an honest conversation.
Envision what will happen to your emotions, mind, self esteem if you don’t forgive.
As a leader, encourage forgiveness in the workplace and be a model for forgiveness.
Don’t let this negative event or negative emotion define you.
Focus on the positive. When we are pushed in a negative situation we can only see the person in a negative light.
Create new positive memories. Leave the past in the past.
Being a boss is a full-time job and is not as easy as it seems.
The truth is, being the boss can be an emotional rollercoaster.
It requires maturity, focus and emotional discipline, especially when dealing with people.
That is why Kim Scott has established a few principles that can help bosses create a culture of candor, build stable relationships and evolve into great bosses.
According to Kim Scott, managers, leaders or bosses:
Deal with people.
Express what they think.
Build and guide cohesive teams.
Accept and give fair and candid feedback.
As you can see, Kim Scott makes no distinction between a boss, a leader and a manager because eventually, they have to assume different roles and master different skills at different moments.
They all have to find out a way to get what they want by saying what they mean.
Radical Candor: How to Get What You Want by Saying What You Mean
Why and how to build relationships?
The relationships you have with your team determine your level of success, company culture, and performance.
To build great relationships that will help your business:
Take care of yourself first.
Stay centered and create a healthy work life balance.
Find out what works best for you and apply it.
Care personally about people.
Respect boundaries and people physical space. It is detrimental to find a balance between creating personal yet professional bonds.
Spend time alone with your team members.
Stay true to your values and share them if possible.
Be transparent and aware of your emotions.
Discipline your reactions. Learn to respond and not react.
Why and how to build a great team?
People’s motivations are personal.
Every team member can be exceptional, they just have to find the right fit and the right motivations.
Needless to say, work life is better when your team loves what they do.
To build a great team:
Get to know the people on your team. Focus more on them than on results.
Understand people’s strength and weaknesses, identify how they tick and how their job fits into their life plan.
Avoid micromanaging or ignoring your team members.
Allocate as much time to those who are struggling as the top performers.
Listen to your team members, learn to incorporate their thinking into yours, and give them the opportunity to complain, share ideas, and raise issues. This way, you will create a culture of innovation.
Why and how to accept/give feedback?
Feedback is an uncomfortable process. To accept and give proper feedback:
Earn your team’s trust.
Listen more than you speak.
Understand what motivates your team and help them avoid burnout or boredom.
Understand your audience and adapt to it.
See feedback as an act of guidance and don’t make it personal.
Solicit feedback especially in private conversations and outside of meetings.
Voice your own disagreements. Speak up when things are not going well.
Take responsibility fo your actions and admit when you have made a mistake
Discern the truth from a lie when it comes to feedback.
Be humble in your delivery and state that you want to help.
Why and how to achieve results?
Every boss wants results. To achieve results:
Have frequent one on one conversation with your team and with a positive mindset. Have a one on one conversation with your team members to get to know them, to solve problems effectively and to help you understand what is working and what is not.
Create key metrics to measure progress. Write down any possible updates.
Create meetings where you can debate, encourage new ideas and make big decisions.
Test out the feasibility of the ideas you have received.
Radical Candor: How to Get What You Want by Saying What You Mean By Kim Scott is a step by step guide on how to be a candid boss.
It is about building candid relationships with the people you work with and about using your humanity as a leadership tool.
Radical Candor: How to Get What You Want by Saying What You Mean By Kim Scott essentially takes the pressure off leaders.
The principles shared expose candor as a management tool, put bosses at ease and help them understand that there is more to being a boss than giving orders.
In addition, the principles shared remove fear, self-doubt and anxiety, then create an understanding regarding the role of a boss.
Furthermore, Kim Scott uses her own experiences at Google and Adsense to drive the conversation and to illustrate her ideas about radical candor.
She provides amazing tools and techniques to implement in order to be a great boss and to have a healthy relationship with your direct reports.
Her tools and techniques are detailed and are not exclusive to bosses.
Finally, the best thing about this book is that you can tell that Kim Scott cares about the career advancement and the emotional health of every boss.
Through radical candor, she demonstrates how to improve all aspects of your work life.
You don’t have to implement every tool or technique right away.
Let me know below what you think about this book!
In order to build a great team, you need to understand how each person’s job fits into their life goals
The way you treat people determines whether you’ll get their best effort, a perfunctory effort, or an effort to sabotage you.
Take a moment to drain it all in and celebrate success. When you access a new position, you are either frightened or excited.
Take some time to assess your new role and the advancement in your career, on your success.
Get your personal life together. Have hobbies and a strong support system in place.
Prepare your transition to your new position.
#2. Mind your character
When you meet someone for the first time, they will have a tendency to test you, your principles, character, core values and boundaries.
For example, from your boss to the cleaning lady, they will all check if you get angry easily or his much patience you have.
It is important to always be developing yourself as a leader.
#3. Check your attitude
A positive attitude is everything and will determine your heights to success. During the first few months, it is detrimental to:
Adopt a winning strategy.
Be aware of your actions. You are now a role model.
Keep a positive attitude and body language, even when you don’t feel like it.
#4. Be approachable
Sometimes, it’s important to seem approachable:
Introduce yourself to people even if you don’t know them or are not introduced. Don’t wait too long before introducing yourself or else it will quickly get awkward.
Remember names when you are being introduced.
Try to get along with people for the first few days.
Help others find their motivation.
#5. Groom yourself and dress like a leader
No matter what people say, first impressions matter unfortunately. Dressing like a leader will help you feel confident and will in consequence increase your ability to lead.
Even though you know that clothes don’t define your character, most people make snap judgments.
Also, observe the company’s dress code and dress accordingly.
#6. Keep learning
Learning is a humbling process. Even though new leaders think that they can handle their position with their old skills and their old knowledge, most of them don’t have the necessary skills to be a leader.
Make sure that you study and learn the corporate culture.
Evaluate what you have learned from your previous jobs and from the previous one in your position.
Ask questions even if they make you look or feel incompetent.
Don’t put too much pressure on yourself to perform.
Don’t stop learning. Not because you have reached a leadership position that you have to stop learning and stop asking questions.
#6. When You Find Your Purpose or Renew Your Vision
You need to know why you work and your team needs to know why they work for you.
It is the vision that leads you and propels you forward, that wakes you up in the morning, that drives your performance, that is communicated to your employees, that gives meaning to your actions and decisions, and that leans on your belief systems.
Leaders with a vision are ambitious and satisfied with their lives, become hopeful and optimistic about the future, invite change, and select their employees according to their strengths and not their weaknesses.
They are also daring and don’t fear failure, are emotionally invested in their goals, flexible, persistent, resistant to social pressure and are convinced of their future success.
You have experienced different cultures and are now culturally sensitive.
Cultural sensitivity is being aware that everyone is not the same. It means being able to learn from different people, to understand their backgrounds, to collaborate and cooperate with them, without being judgmental.
Cultural sensitivity means viewing everyone as a unique individual. It promotes unity and has become a skill that is most useful in the world of today.
You are now capable of adapting your leadership and communication style to every single member of your team.
You are also capable of shifting the focus from yourself to your team.
#9. When You Thought You Knew It All
Not because you are the leader, that you have all the solutions or are always right.
In fact, being a leader is being placed in a position of service and humility.
To be a humble leader:
Be confident about your own capabilities.
Take the time to think and to come up with a solution.
Understand that being a leader is not about being right.
Give people the time to think for themselves and to make their own mistakes.
Acknowledge that someone on your team may have better ideas than you do.
Learn to ask for help and to detect if someone needs help.
Learn to ponder your responses.
#10. When You Have Foot In The Mouth Syndrome
Sometimes, we say whatever comes to our mind.
Other times, we blurt out things that we don’t mean but we haven’t measured the real impact of our words.
In these moments, we understand that we should be quiet, that we should learn to speak less and listen more.
#11. When You Get Caught Up In Office Politics
Office politics is often badly perceived because it can be cruel, calculated and manipulative.
Sometimes, office politics is a dangerous and corrosive game but it is a game. It is part of human nature, a social activity, a marathon and not a sprint.
Other times, properly navigating office politics can give you access to leadership opportunities and promotion.
Once you have experienced office politics, you become aware of the power play, of how you speak and listen to people.
You start making sure that you are robust, are not dependent on people or other external factors, that you are emotionally detached from your work and that you can clearly separate your identity from your job.
#12. When You Have To Deal With Toxic Coworkers
We all have been exposed during a period of time to annoying, hateful, toxic coworkers who can drive us crazy.
Whether it’s confronting a team member about their behavior or their performance, toxic coworkers can take a toll on you.
However, it can also help you grow and become a better leader.
#13. When You Have Identified Your Core Leadership Values
Core values are principles that build your character and that define who you are deep down.
In life and in the workplace, your core values will definitely be put to the test.
For example, some people will not hesitate to lie on you or to sabotage your work to advance their career.
Consolidating your core leadership values requires hard work, determination, daily practice and self-discipline.
#14. When You Welcome Change
If you have experienced drastic change in the workplace, you know that is better not to resist it.
Change is a part of life, is a constant and is inevitable. Change shakes things up, disrupts old habits, breathes new life into the workplace and into any project.
Furthermore, it has the ability to stimulate interest in your job. It also creates an opportunity for promotion and to develop new skills.