We so often hear about all of the things that we must start doing and rarely hear about the things that we need to stop doing to become better leaders. Here is a clip of Bob Newhart playing the part of a psychologist. Take a look–and reflect on the message for just a moment.
At CO2 Partners, we don’t coach in this manner; we don’t simply say, “Stop it!” when discussing a client’s bad habits and then hope for the best. But we do try to identify bad habits, as well as the reasons behind their use, so that leaders can be more successful and self-aware.
In “What got you here won’t get you there: How successful people become even more successful,” Marshall Goldsmith presents 20 Bad Habits with regard to interpersonal behavior. Do you feel the need to win at all costs? Do you start too many sentences with NO, BUT, or HOWEVER? Do you always try to add value to somebody’s idea? Do you lead with facts and tend to dismiss the emotion? Do you refuse to express regret or fail to express gratitude? Do you claim credit when that credit really belongs to somebody else? These are some of the bad habits in Goldsmith’s list.
It’s often easier, of course, to identify bad habits in others. But, as a leader, you must try to stop or at least subdue your bad habits. You’ll become more self-aware and increase your emotional intelligence in the process.
Work your way through Goldsmith’s full list of 20 Bad Habits with an eye toward both your personal and professional lives. The fewer bad habits you have, the more you’ll excel at leading self, leading others, and leading organizations.