Organisations are made up of people and people are a huge asset to any organization. To be more successful in achieving their goal and objectives; organisations needs to have an understanding about their human assets, their behavior, tendencies, best practice etc..” Leadership is the ability of one person to influence a group of persons toward the achievement of common goals” (Yukl, 1994). Influencing others means that leaders must have an understanding about their behavior, which can only happen when they themselves understand their values, assumptions, beliefs and expectations. Understanding oneself means one must carry out self-assessment/evaluation as this is very important for leaders today. I will be carrying out an assessment about the benefit of self -assessment/evaluation to leaders today and the importance of understanding human behavior in oraganisations.
1.2 DEFINITION OF HUMAN BEHAVIOR
Human behavior is the way people behave and which can be influence by culture, emotions, attitudes, values, ethics, genetic etc.. Depending on the society and environment, human behavior can either be common, usual, acceptable or unacceptable. Human behavior can either be learnt as we relate to our environment; for example, tying your shoes is a learned behavior or it can be innate which can be inherited through genes.
1.3THE IMPORTANCE OF UNDERSTANDING HUMAN BEHAVIOR TO AN ORGANIZATION
Organisations depend on the behavior of both individual and teams to achieve their goals and objectives; as such it is very critical for organisations to have thorough understanding of human behavior. Understanding human behavior is a key to organisational success. Human behavior defines how people work together and relate with one another. Communication being the cornerstone of behavior can only be effective when people understand one another. Interpersonal conflict can be reduced in an organisation once there’s an understanding of human behavior.
Behavior can influence negatively on the achievement of an organization’s goals and objectives if not manage well; will lead to poor output and failure. Organisations need to plan their training programme, understanding the behavior of its employees will inform the planning process, thereby ensuring that training needs are effectively met. An effective understanding of the diverse behavior of personnel is important. Evidence has shown that as people get to know one another, they became less concerned about differences if they see themselves as sharing more important characteristics, such as personality and values, that represent deep-level diversity” (Stephen P Robbins & Timothy A Judge, Organizational Behavior -15th Editions) A co-operative team that knows how to work with one another can produce better result than those who have problems relating to one another.
1.4 THE IMPORTANCE OF UNDERSTANDING HUMAN BEHAVIOR BY LEADERS
Organisations need strong leadership to achieve its goals and objectives. An organisation is only as successful as its leadership. Leadership is the ability to influence a group towards the achievement of a vision or set of goals. Individuals or group can only be influence when there’s an understanding of their behavior. Business necessity, enlightenment about differences and moral fortitude have combine to push organisations into hiring a diverse set of employees, as a result managing this diversity has proven to be a challenge to leaders…… Leaders can effectively manage this challenge through understanding this diversity. A leader who fails to understand his followers thereby focusing at a very superficial level by commanding others to do their will; is at the bottom of the leadership level. Deeper understanding provides more options, give one more potential tools, and frankly, makes one a powerful leader (Stephen P Robbins & Timothy A Judge, Organizational Behavior -15th Editions).
This is a trait of level 5 leadership. “Understanding the behavior of followers will assist leaders in putting together teams to manage projects and it will also assist in assigning task to employees in a way that will put to efficient use each member’s strength rather than their weakness “ (www.employment-testing.com) Attempting to influencing individuals without understanding why they behave the way they do, might yield random or unpredictable effect and this will lead to leaders being unsuccessful as followers will be alienated; whereas understanding the personalities of subordinates and superiors informs leaders as to others expectations and provides insights into motivation, competitiveness and interpersonal relationships and communication.
1.5 LEADERSHIP SELF-EVALUATION/SELF-ASSESSMENT
As leaders the ability to influence people has to be continuously improved; and the first step in achieving that will be by knowing yourself and gaining understanding of your leadership style, skills, traits, competencies, abilities, personality type and experience. According to Kevin Sharer of AMGEN CEO and president, “Leadership has many voices. You need to be who you are, not to emulate someone else.” An apt statement as leaders has the responsibility of influencing others in the achievement of goals and objectives; an achievement that will be almost impossible to attain when followers lacks faith in their leader. People normally have faith in authentic leaders as they are leaders who not only know what they believe in and value but also act on that values and beliefs candidly and openly. Most leaders are unaware of the effect their emotional intelligence has on their superiors and subordinates, many a time we blame negative outcome to those around us, all the time being totally blind to the fact that our personality might have had effect on others action.
“Those who use the emotional intelligence framework to guide their thoughts and actions may find it easier to create trust in relationship, harness energy under pressure, and sharpen their ability to make sound decisions-in other words, they increase their potential for success in the workplace”(Jones and Bartlett learning PTT) only by carrying out self-assessment/evaluation will you be able to understand your emotional intelligence and other traits. As leaders one should know what their strength and weaknesses as this will enable them build on their strength and march it to their leadership opportunities, it will also assist in the development of their weaknesses and allows for the elimination of threats to leadership.
1.6 THE BENEFITS OF SELF- ASSESSMENT/SELF-EVALUATION TO LEADERS TODAY.
Most of the benefits of self-assessment have already been discuss above, however some benefits are; A.Develop Emotional Intelligence
When taking time to self-reflect you are looking inwards. Self-awareness gives you the ability the ability to understand your emotions, strengths, weaknesses, drives, values and goals, and recognize their impact on others you are leading. Being self-aware will aid you in controlling or redirecting your disruptive emotions and impulses and adapt to changing circumstances. Building these emotional intelligence components will improve your leadership.
B. ASSISTS IN BECOMING EFFECTIVE LEADER
Authentic leaders are clear on their core values, and this will help to strengthen leadership integrity and lead you to better decisions. Understanding your core values will build followers trust in you as a leader and this will make decision making easier as our integrity is often put to the test during stressful and difficult times.
C. BUILD SELF-CONFIDENCE
Confidence is crucial for leaders. It helps in effective communications, decision making, and influence building. People will see you as you see yourself, being aware of your strength as leader will build self-confidence and this will increase team effectiveness.