HR professionals should be promoting the importance of self-awareness if they want to help their employees grow and develop – that’s the assertion from one industry expert who insists the skill is a critical workplace asset.
“If we can help people increase that self-awareness, they know what competencies they have and which ones are primitive at the moment so they can make strategic and conscious decisions as to what they should be working on,” says Janice Parvianinen, global partner at Lumina Learning.
“Then they start to recognize the value of diversity with the others they work with and they can easily graduate to the level of looking at their team as a combination of strengths rather than a mess of weaknesses,” she continues.
According to Ontario-based Parvianinen, self-awareness is also essential for progression – both professional and personal.
“If you punch a destination to into a GPS, you tell it where you want to go but the first thing it’s going to ask is; ‘Where are you?’” she tells HRM. “So if you want to go anywhere, the first thing you need to know is – where are you currently?”
Parvianinen claims that improved self-awareness not only impacts an individual’s own potential but also helps employees understand their employees’ alternative approaches.
“It’s not just being aware of self, it’s also learning tools like these with a team and then realizing it’s not personal, it’s personality,” she told HRM. “That person is not out to get me, it’s just in this situation I’m people-focused and they’re outcome focused and we’re seeing the world totally different yet look at the great diversity they bring. Look what value they add.
“It can really help the individual articulate who they are and help them understand others who are different from them and then be able to look at what they’re choosing to do with their energy and what they’re not doing and then make a conscious action plan and say; ‘Now for the next level of my game, I would like to work on these competencies.’”
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