I had a great conversation with Perry Timms in episode 21 of The Knowing Self Knowing Others Podcast. Perry is an award winning HR specialist and one of the top thinkers in his field

Here are my Top Takeaways from our conversation……

“Self-awareness – is knowing your shadows and your sparks!”

Perry suggests that there are three different buckets of self-awareness that people fall into and the shorthand way I’d describe them is: the little bucket of toxicity, the medium bucket of limited-confidence and the big bucket of being-aware

Leaders in senior leadership position who have limited self-awareness are often limited by their insecurities and fears, which form barriers to awareness of themselves and others. They have no awareness that the people around them are having to ‘work-around’ them and are achieving in spite of them, not because of them

There is a need for the dispersal of power in organisations. If we rely on traditional organisational structures to deliver success, we’re going to be missing out on lots of insightful inputs. But in a team with a collective awareness will be encouraging and nurturing an agile leadership approach which will give people space to share those insightful inputs. Hive mind and hive spirit needs dispersed accountability

Self-awareness does not mean self-confidence, it might even create imposter syndrome because the more we know, the more aware we become that we know nothing.

Perry says, ensure you have Earth wires in your team: people that sense check you and help you root down into reality. Earth wires are critical friends who have your interest at heart and understand the outcome you’re trying to achieve.

Being self-aware helps middle managers understand their senior leaders’ drivers, values and priorities which can help them pitch ideas and solutions. If you understand the interests of someone else, you are better able to speak their language and help solve problems that are important to them

Surround yourself with people who can give you independent commentary to help you narrate and co-create your self-awareness. You can’t build your self-awareness in a vacuum (because that’s just reflection). When you consider hybrid working in your organisation, what does the phrase ‘surround yourself’ mean? How can you achieve that connection without physical proximity?

Virtual teams can consider regular updates that share both the ‘what’ of work and the ‘how’ of work. We can share the to-do list and add an emotional commentary about how we feel about that, as a way of building connection helping us to surround ourselves with colleagues who can support us and back us up. Perry says, we need to reinvent relationships for the post-covid virtual world.

Remember that you can catch up on these Top Takeaways on YouTube too!