As a manager, how do you know if your ego is out of control? Just pay close attention to a number of critical factors. I guarantee that if you are aware of your circumstances, honest with your self-appraisal, and in touch with reality, it will become crystal clear whether your ego is adequately in check or running rampant in your organization or department. Some of the factors indicating problems with an out-of-control ego are:
? Consistently poor morale
? Constant communication breakdowns
? Bad hiring decisions
? Consistently poor decisions
? Acquisitions or mergers that go sour
? High employee turnover
? Consistently poor quality
? Outdated policies, products, services, and/or procedures
? Loss of market share
? Vulnerability to competitors
? Poor sales results
? Decreasing profits from year to year
Carefully observe early warning signs for these factors and determine their cause and any relationship between them and your ego, and then respond to them and manage them effectively and without ego before they become embedded in your corporate culture, employee attitudes, and customer attitudes.
1. Can I ever be wrong?
2. Can an employee be smarter than I am?
3. Do I trust my employees?
4. Can I reverse myself after a bad decision, or do I die by it?
5. Can I give up control?
6. Do I have pet projects or activities that I can't let go of?
7. Can I freely give credit where someone else was responsible for the positive outcome?
8. Can I discard old products, services, or ideas that I was responsible for?
9. Can I share the limelight with others?
10. Do I give adequate appreciation and recognition to others?
11. Can I admit failure?
12. Can I admit to not having an answer?
13. Do I procrastinate on simple or important tasks, decisions, or initiatives?
These questions should get you started. Honest answers will help you clearly identify if your ego is a problem in your position.
If you can rise to the challenge of channeling your ego in this way, be encouraged by the following:
1. Your ego is not part of your DNA or genes. It is man-made and can be unmade or controlled if you choose.
2. It is better to succeed and enjoy your success with a controlled ego than it is to go down in flames with an ego that is out of control.
3. You will never "win them all," no matter how good you think you are. So get used to losing once in a while, if you haven't already.
4. Hire a personal coach. The cost will be peanuts compared with the time and money you could save your organization. I accept ten new coaching clients every year. If you want to be considered for one of the slots, give me a call.
5. Business is not about winning or looking good, but serving others well.
I believe the first test of a really great man is his humility.