Self-Assessments Only Get You So Far (Do This Instead)

We are the worst judges of ourselves. Whether we are talking about strengths or deficits, especially our deficits. It’s scientifically proven. Don’t believe me? Look up the Dunning-Kruger effect.

No one sets out to be a bad leader and bad leaders don’t believe they’re bad leaders. When pressed, most will find ways to justify their actions by saying, “It’s the economy,” “My people are slacking off,” “They lack the skills” or “Our competition beat us to market.”

While some of these complaints may contribute to a team’s performance, leadership is at the heart of it all.

What does this have to do with assessments? Over the past few months, we’ve launched the Effective Leadership Profile Assessment based off of research conducted about what the most effective leaders do differently. In addition to identifying the Welding Zone as an area where highly effective leaders stay, the study identified 4 Leader Profiles based on a leader’s use of Love and Discipline in the workplace.

Love and Discipline Profiles.001

Our original survey, which had direct reports rate their leaders, found few leaders were Welders, while most were Exploiters or Rulers.

We then proceeded to create an assessment where leaders could identify their own Leader Profile. The results that came back were a complete change. The majority of leaders who took the assessment were self assessed themselves as Welders!

Here’s where it got interesting. After the leaders rated themselves, we administered a survey to their direct reports to get an accurate read of the leaders.

Can you guess what happened?

Nearly every leader rated themselves higher than they were rated by their direct reports. Here’s a perfect example of some of our findings (the identity of the leader will remain confidential).

Leader Profile Results

While taking a self-assessment can help you uncover areas of opportunity, if you’re truly looking to grow and improve as a leader, the best people to ask are the ones who report to you every day.

Asking your direct reports to complete the Effective Leadership Profile Survey anonymously about you as a leader is a great way to:

  1. Show your team you are invested in improving
  2. Get an accurate view of your current leadership style
  3. Identify areas of opportunity for leadership development

Would you like to identify your Leader Profile? You have two options:

Free Leader Profile Assessment Through our work and research around what effective leaders do differently, we have identified four leader profiles (Ruler, Exploiter, Pleaser and Welder.) Find out which one you are for free.

Let your team identify your profile here.

About the Author Christina Wilder is the VP of Learning Strategies.  She is passionate about the development of modern professionals through short engaging content.  Her article “Dispelling the 5 Myths of Microlearning” is up for article of the year by Training Industry.com.

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