The last two days have been incredible. Yesterday I read two assessments of my leadership completed by Five Board members and six staff members. It was great feedback that will help me immensely in putting together my developmental plan, our last assignment at the end of the week.
Something hit me like never before: Those difficult but critical conversations that sometimes we have to have are best in the context of a strong relationship. One of the assessments had open ended questions for my raters. Their encouraging words made we want to know what I need to improve and made me want to do whatever possible to be a better leader. Quite simply, I felt respected and loved.
As I reflected on that it hit me that if I want to confidently walk into a crucial conversation with someone, it's so much easier and the prospects of success are so much higher when I know they know I care about them and respect them. But if I think they're not sure, I feel very skittish. One of my tasks as a leader is to help my team and other staff to know that I care about them personally, what I respect and admire in their lives and leadership, that I care about their personal development, etc. When I don't have that assurance, it's not an excuse for avoiding some tough conversations, but it helps me understand one of my leadership tasks better.
I think that was my biggest take-aways from yesterday. Now for an accountable plan to improve! Fortunately, that's all a part of this experience and beyond.