Conscious leadership might be described as a leadership style that places a high emphasis on self-awareness, empathy, and the ability to communicate and collaborate effectively. Conscious leaders, as with Conscious enterprises prioritise people and create a positive global impact ahead of profit. I suggest it’s much more.
Conscious leadership isn’t only about achieving results, but is also about creating an environment where stakeholders, employees, and customers can thrive and grow. In this article, I will propose some of the key principles of conscious leadership and why it is becoming increasingly important in today’s world.
Self-awareness is a critical component of conscious leadership. Leaders who are self-aware are more in tune with their emotions, values, strengths, and weaknesses. They understand how their behavior affects others, and are willing to reflect on their actions and take responsibility for them. Self-awareness allows conscious leaders to build trust with their team members, as we perceive them as authentic, transparent, and open-minded. They understand the need for an outside Coach, mentor or adviser to help reflect and deal with their actions and any ensuing personal impact.
Inclusion as defined by philosopher Martin Buber is the ability to understand and relate to the feelings of others. Leaders who practice Inclusion seek to put themselves in the shoes of their team members or customers and relate to their challenges and struggles. Inclusion enables leaders to create a supportive and inclusive work environment, where everyone feels valued and respected. When leaders practice Inclusion, they build stronger relationships with their team members, which leads to increased loyalty, commitment, and ensuing effectiveness.
Conscious leaders understand the value of collaboration. They believe everyone has something to contribute. They encourage their team members to share their ideas and opinions. Conscious leaders foster a culture of collaboration by promoting open communication, active listening, and constructive feedback. They also understand the importance of diversity and they create opportunities for all team members to contribute to the decision-making process.
Conscious leaders are driven by a higher purpose. They are not only focused on achieving financial success, but they also have a deep commitment to creating a positive impact in the world. They understand that their business is part of a larger ecosystem, and they strive to make a difference in their community and in wider society.
Values guide conscious leaders. Values such as integrity, respect, and social responsibility. They inspire their team members to align their personal values with the organisation’s purpose, which leads to greater motivation and engagement.
Conscious leaders understand the importance of resilience. They know that setbacks and failures are part of the journey, and they are willing to learn from their mistakes and move forward. Conscious leaders are not afraid to take risks, but they also have the courage to admit when they are wrong and make necessary changes.
It is that ability to stand back and alter the course that sets resilience apart from persistence. Conscious Leaders foster a culture of resilience by encouraging their team members to take calculated risks and learn from their setbacks. They don’t see setbacks as failures but as opportunities.
Why is Conscious Leadership important?
Aside from the above characteristics, a growing demographic, including the younger generation is looking for more than just a pay cheque. More and more, people want to work for and with organisations that align with their values and have a positive impact on the world. Conscious leaders can attract and keep top talent by creating a culture of purpose and social responsibility.
Second, customers are becoming more conscious about the impact of their purchasing decisions. They are looking for products and services that are sustainable, ethical, and socially responsible. Conscious leaders can build trust with their customers by demonstrating their commitment to these values.
In my previous post I discussed Self-actualisation which also emphasizes the importance of personal growth and development. It involves exploring one’s potential and pushing oneself beyond one’s comfort zone.
Self-actualized individuals are constantly learning and growing, and they are not afraid to take risks or make mistakes. They can also be Conscious leaders who also value personal growth and development, but they have to be more focused on helping their people reach their full potential.
In summary, conscious leadership and self-actualization share some common principles such as self-awareness, empathy, collaboration, purpose, and resilience. However, conscious leadership is primarily focused on creating a positive impact on the world, while self-actualization is primarily focused on personal growth and development.
Both approaches are valuable and need not be exclusive of each other. With awareness comes the possibility of achieving both.