CONSIDERATION: The Core Strength of Humanity Meta-Factor
TRUE TILT LEADERSHIP…Balanced, Conscious, Creative and Inspired.
LESSON on CONSIDERATION in the
Tilt Leadership Model
Category: HUMANITY Meta-Factor
(Includes the Core Strengths of Trust, Consideration, Diplomacy)
Definition of Humanity Meta-Factor: The quality of having harmonious and collaborative relationships that come from conscious concern for ones impact on others, so that social influence is expanded.
Proficiency #1. Understand potential unintended consequences. (Strength=Consideration)
Consideration is about careful thought regarding the emotional and social consequences of one’s words and actions as they impact the world and others around us. Sadly, the desire for immediate gratification and short-term results has increased in recent times and has served to chip away at the focus on this particular strength in many organizations. The word “careful” implies taking the time to think forward a few steps to consider the impact your words and actions may have. Then, making adjustments that indicate respect for that impact. Being thoughtful and careful means you are mindful and conscious of yourself and others. It also means being able to project the potential ripple effect of decisions and actions into the future.
CONSIDERATION balanced with BRAVERY= The MOMENTUM Polarity
Momentum is needed in any endeavor and moving forward toward goals is part of the responsibility of being a leader. We all know that moving too slowly (with excessive consideration) can be just as negative as moving too quickly. And taking too much risk with bold, brave action that may later be considered reckless will eventually have a negative impact on momentum as well. The mess that will have to be cleaned up after reckless decision-making will cause even longer setbacks to goal accomplishment. Balancing both sides of this polarity is essential to good decision-making to build steady, forward-movement toward goals.
The Four Traits of Consideration:
The leader is compassionate toward people and other living organisms in the world. The leader that is compassionate is concerned for the circumstances of others and thinks about how their decisions contribute to improving or detracting from that, whether planned or unintended. Compassion toward the planet is becoming increasingly included in this important trait as companies become more educated about the potential environmental impact of their goods and services. Educated leaders are concerned about the regenerative impact of their goods and services more and more today.
The leader behaves in a way that accepts self and others as imperfect human beings. The leader who is comfortable in their own skin and doesn’t take themselves too seriously is a leader that helps others around them to do the same. This contributes to positive self-esteem and self-concept, which in turn allows the leader more stable in their patterns of behavior. It is the person with low self-esteem that acts in ways that are over-polarized, detracting from effective behavior by all those in close proximity.
The leader has the ability to understand and relate to the feelings of others. Because they can do this, they tend to respond to difficult situations with kindness and respect toward those affected. This does not mean they take responsibility for how others feel, but that they are aware of it. Many times, leaders of companies can make decisions that end up having a negative impact on their stakeholders because they were not thought through entirely. The way they respond to the situation will either contribute to ongoing trust or it will reveal the lack of empathy toward those affected. When this trait is missing, the entity could end up on a slow, steady path to demise because of lower and lower consumer trust.
The leader is aware that no-one is perfect and knows that they are just as likely as anyone else to make errors in judgment. Because of this self-acceptance, they are forgiving of others when mistakes happen and don’t overreact or lay blame. They listen to the problem and are part of the investigation and planning regarding how to prevent the problem again, but do not deflect responsibility. They know that in organizations nothing happens in a vacuum and that many people may have been involved in a mistake. They don’t excuse errors, but they do forgive them. They hold others accountable for repeated mistakes and errors, and provide consequences for the behavior, while forgiving the person.
So, how does the leader demonstrate CONSIDERATION in climate & culture?
The Systemic Challenge:
Organizational consideration is established through commitment to explicit and written agreements about behaviors that ensure reasonable thought and care toward unintended consequences. Since the leader has the highest level of responsibility for the culture created by their actions, they must be highly attuned to making responsible decisions about what may happen as a result of their actions. When this aspect of leadership is ignored, collateral damage can be expansive, taking a toll on human capital, the planet, and eventually profits as well. Mitigating negative consequences is one of the most critical responsibilities of leaders today because of the expansive connectivity and complexity of systems today. The ripple effect can be devastating if decisions are not thought through carefully.
Interesting Learning for this lesson:
One of the most memorable classes I had in graduate school was a class about Risk Management and the text was called “Normal Accidents: Living with High-Risk Technologies” by Charles Perrow. The author of this book posited that because of the complexity of technology today, it is inevitable that we will have catastrophic accidents that will have wide-reaching impact to the world and it’s inhabitants beyond anything we have experienced previously. Such accidents, according to Perrow, should be considered “normal” because of the increased probability of them happening. In class, we studied tragedies such as oil spills, fires, nuclear and chemical spills, as well as marine and aircraft accidents. The main point is that we must expect a certain number of these accidents and that as we add safety precautions, the complexity of systems is just increased. Therefore, leaders must take even more precaution, so that bad judgment doesn’t exacerbate already concerning risks and dangers that could be devastating. Especially in this age where we have technologies that could damage the planet beyond any chance for recovery.
Quote by Charles Perrow:
“As our technology expands, as our wars multiply, and as we invade more and more of nature, we create systems and organizations that increase the risks for the operators, the passengers, innocent by-standers and for future generations. That’s the bad news. The good news is that if we can understand the nature of risky enterprises better, we may be able to reduce or even remove these dangers…”
Questions for thought:
What are YOU doing to ensure that CONSIDERATION and BRAVERY are in balance are are supported by intentional focus by your leadership and the leadership of all those you influence in your organization? Are you part of the problem or consciously supporting CONSIDERATION in your life and actions?
Meta-Factor of HUMANITY and Proficiency #3: Diplomacy.
COPYRIGHT 2011, All Rights Reserved
Pam Boney, Lead Instructor
Tilt Academy for Innovative Leadership