Being a leader in an organization, you might come across many situations to make difficult decisions. This can be challenging and sometimes difficult to make everyone in the organization agree with.
It’s not uncommon for your employees to disagree with a few decisions made. However, there are a few instances where your emotions might get in the way. Embracing reflective thinking will help you in such situations.
This article speaks about the importance of reflexive leadership and how important it is in making decisions.
Helps Take Better Decisions
Adopting a reflexive style of leadership means taking stock of your personal values, core beliefs, and biases to inform how you lead.
A reflexive style of leadership is one that focuses on the leader’s own beliefs and values. You (leaders) who adopt this approach are aware of their biases, and you use reflection to help them make better decisions.
Reflexive leaders consider their own beliefs, values, priorities, and goals in making critical decisions. They also value feedback from others because it helps them understand how another person sees the world or what they feel about a situation.
Helps Think From Your Peer’s Perspective
Despite the long hours and tremendous pressure from the organization, they might not be able to see how their own biases are affecting employees. The pressure can make it difficult for the higher organization to see the bigger picture.
Reflection helps leaders to put aside the daily grind, tune in to themselves and their surroundings, and make time for critical thinking. Having a good team leader skills will help gain insights into how they can be more effective in their work.
Reflection is a way of stepping back and looking at yourself, your team, and your organization. It can help you to connect with others more deeply and make better decisions on behalf of the whole.
Helps Align with Core Values and Beliefs
What’s the goal of reflexive leadership? The goal is to make conscious choices that align with a leader’s core values and beliefs. By reflecting on the decisions you’ve made, you can put aside the daily grind and tune in to yourself and your surroundings.
Being aware of your own biases, other’s biases might have about your decisions, and even how other people may interpret what you say will help you make better decisions.
Reflection helps leaders tune out distractions so they can focus on making critical choices that align with their core values. This step you take will ultimately lead to better results for everyone involved.
Know the Process of Reflexive Leadership
Reflexive leadership involves four steps, and it’s imperative that you understand them. They are following:
Step 1: Think Before You Decide
One way to lead with reflexive leadership is by pausing before making a decision or taking action.
This helps to consider what you’re bringing to the table as a leader. Let’s say that your team has been discussing how to improve their customer service, and you’ve come up with an idea for how they could do it better.
Before you tell them about it, ask yourself if this is something worth sharing with them at all. Or there might be better ways for them to solve this problem by themselves without involving you in any way.
Step 2: Take Time To Understand
Reflect on your thoughts, feelings, and biases. Ask yourself why you feel that way about the situation at hand; what do those emotions mean? Don’t let yourself get caught up in defending yourself or pointing fingers at others.
This step should help guide future decisions based on facts rather than emotion; otherwise, you’re no longer being reflexive leaders but reactive ones.
Step 3: Consider Your Own Biases
You might have an opinion about something that’s not necessarily true or honest about yourself. You can use this time to be introspective about your feelings and beliefs. If there are things that are holding back your leadership abilities (for example, if you’re feeling intimidated by other people), pause and think them through.
Introspecting could affect how people perceive their relationships with you as well as others. For instance, how they interact with each other when working together on projects or initiatives together in general.
Step 4: Consider How Others Will Feel
This one can be tough because we all have our own way of thinking about ourselves and others. Sometimes those ways don’t align perfectly with reality.
However, it can be helpful if you take into account how others feel, especially those who are involved in any given situation. Doing so makes any decisions based solely upon what feels right inside your head without considering everyone else involved in those situations too carefully.
Encourage Staff to Reflect Upon Their Decisions and Actions
Leaders should also create an organizational culture that supports reflexivity and encourages staff to reflect upon decisions and actions.
Organizational leaders should set an example for their staff by modeling reflexivity themselves. They need to be aware of their own biases, assumptions, and values. This, in turn, helps them make sound decisions based on facts rather than emotions or biases.
Leaders can encourage their teams by offering support when employees are deciding how they want to proceed with a given task or project. Leaders can also encourage employees by providing feedback when they’re unsure about something.
Example to Understand Reflexive Leadership
Reflection is an important part of making better decisions. Leaders should be able to pause before making a decision or taking action to consider what they can bring to the table as a leader (in other words: their own mental state).
Here’s an example that you can relate to:
Let’s say a business trip idea with your team members is on the cards. It’s common for you to consider whether or not to proceed with the plan. You may think the idea of a trip is great and refreshing, however, that might cause tiredness and affect next week’s productivity.
Instead of allowing your emotions or what you think to get in the way of making good decisions for the team’s future health, you can approve of the plan (sometimes, a small break might help in better productivity too.)
Considering your team’s perspective and not allowing your emotions into the decision-making process would mean less control over what happens next week.
As a leader, it is crucial to reflect on your thoughts, feelings, and biases. This can help you tune in to yourself and your surroundings. It also helps when making critical decisions or taking action because it gives you time to ask yourself why you feel that way about the situation at hand.