Importance of Self-awareness in Employees

I think self-awareness is probably the most important thing towards being a champion”.Billie Jean King

How would self-awareness in employees help a business become successful? The quote above provides the answer. In any sphere of life, having a high level of self-awareness helps a person to understand and truly know their strengths, weaknesses, what drives them or puts them down and other such critical aspects of one’s personality. Self-awareness seems to have become limited to the realm of spiritualism and one’s personal life but that is an erroneous way of looking at this important aspect. Self-awareness in employees is even more relevant and important simply for the reason that at work, we are interacting with strangers and people who we are not close to and it requires even more effort to relate to them positively. Through encouraging self-awareness in employees, companies can ensure that each person would more mindful of their behaviour and consistently work on improving themselves. Self-awareness in employees helps them to not only understand and appreciate their own shortcomings but also those of their co-workers and those they interact with on a daily basis – customers for example.

When people understand themselves, they would be more in control emotionally and would adjust their behaviour with others such that each person can work in a stress-free and congenial work environment. The attainment of goals and vision is a lot easier when each person in the company is working towards them together rather than against each other. We have discussed previously that happy workers make for better work quality and output and higher levels of customer service. Self-awareness in employees helps each person to objectively judge situations and people’s responses and remain aware that their co-workers would have different opinions that deserve respect. In order to create a healthy work environment, it would be useful for companies to help their employees build and consistently strive towards self-awareness.

With so much competition, surge in technology and customers that are demanding it is no surprise that companies must constantly think innovatively about how they can get the best out of their resources – human resources included. It would seem philosophical to delve into the subject of self-awareness but building self-awareness in employees is now a business necessity. The expectation from employees now is to go over and above their assigned tasks, constantly think innovatively and create ideas that would benefit the company. It is usual for companies to realign and reassign certain tasks to employees who they believe have better control over themselves, are able to interact more easily with others and have consistently shown their ability to think intelligently and proactively. Providing such opportunities is a great way to reward students for their effort and performance and in turn leads to loyalty and long-term engagement with the company. So effectively building self-awareness in employees is beneficial primarily for the company – an energized and intelligent workforce that is considerate towards the needs of each other and of the customers.

In the fast-paced business environment of today, employees now, more than before, expect that their leaders will show them the way and lead them to positive outcomes. It therefore is crucial for the leaders to have a high level of self-awareness before they can motivate their staff. With a hold on their own personality traits and style of leadership that comes from self-awareness, leaders would be in a better position to mentor and coach the staff and lead them to new heights personally and professionally. With such focused and awesome leadership, there is no doubt that the employees too would follow suit and build self-awareness in order to serve customers better and be inspirational co-workers.

Encouraging self-awareness in employees will help them to identify the gaps in their skills and knowledge base and discover those areas in which they are the most proficient and the ones that need to be improved. Self-awareness in employees allows them to acquire leadership skills, build a culture of learning and knowledge and encourages a feeling of cohesion and a mutually inclusive workplace, where each person feels respected and cared for irrespective of their differences. Is your company working towards building self-awareness in employees and if yes, how? How do you ensure that people become fully aware of their innate qualities and shortcomings?

The beginning of self-awareness in employees is giving rise to curiosity that fires learning. Employees, who are aware of their characteristics, are usually more confident and therefore more likely to welcome new ideas and thoughts. Such an open-minded approach is a popular and well-liked characteristic and makes managers, co-workers and even customers like such a person. With self-awareness, also comes clarity of thought and acceptance of one’s shortcomings. Such employees are more likely to take part in projects and assignments that challenge them and would enrol for self-development training programs. This in turn helps them to develop additional skills and puts them on the path of career growth. A company benefits since it would be able to ‘produce’ leaders from within its ranks rather than spending additional time, money and effort to recruit from outside their company.

Self-awareness in employees also helps a company by creating an evolved sense of the business environment. They are better able to focus on the requirements of the company since they are fully aware of which skill set is required to achieve the assigned tasks. Self-awareness in employees ensures that they can pre-empt situations and manage stressful situations better. They would be able to convey their feelings appropriately and understand the feelings of those around them ensuring that the tense situation is brought under control faster by looking at solutions rather than assigning blame. Self-awareness also brings about enhanced levels of intuition, which can prove highly beneficial in situations that do not seem to have a solution or closure. Trusting the gut instincts become easier and would more often than not prove a step in the right direction.

Self-awareness in employees and anyone in business also brings about a high degree of discipline. Since such people are more in control of themselves, their responses to people and situations, especially the vexing ones, would be measured and calm. Co-workers tend to respect and trust such people more as they personify integrity and strength of character. Employees with a high level of self-awareness are able to lead their teams, known as problem-solvers and are amongst the more popular people in the office. Having such employees as part of core teams, challenging projects and other such demanding assignments usually insures success.

Self-awareness in employees will allow them to choose roles that most closely align to their strongest abilities and most preferred interests. This in turn will affect the quality of their work – high output and stellar quality. In addition, they would serve to inspire those around them thereby raising the overall standard of work – customer service included – in a company. Any company would be lucky to have such an energized workforce. They would help to build market leadership, gain more customers and consistently deliver high levels of service and products. Self-awareness in employees also leads them to feel connected to the success of the company and hence they would be willing to do whatever it takes to help the company achieve new heights – which would be beneficial for their professional growth as well. Building self-awareness in employees is one of the more effective management tools and companies must seek ways to increase it either through the help of professionals or on-line tools readily available.

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