The Best Leaders Keep an Open Mind

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Here is another valuable Management Tip of the Day from Harvard Business Review. To sign up for a free subscription to any/all HBR newsletters, please click here.

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We often think of great leaders as having the conviction of their beliefs—they’re not pushovers. But the most successful leaders actually show a willingness to be persuaded. How can you do this, particularly on issues where you’re not objective?

o Keep your hand on the dial. When debating a decision, envision turning a dial: all the way to the right represents absolute certainty, and all the way to the left signifies none.

o Recall a moment of opacity, when you couldn’t see a situation clearly, or when something you were so sure was right turned out to be wrong. Whenever you’re feeling overly confident, remind yourself of that moment, and seek counsel.

o Kill your darlings. It can be tough to change your mind about long-held beliefs. But the quicker you acknowledge that an idea (even a beloved one) is unworkable, the sooner you’ll move on to the right course of action.

Adapted from “The Best Leaders Allow Themselves to Be Persuaded,” by Al Pittampalli.

To check out that resource and join the discussion, please click here.

Also, you may wish to check out an anthology, Management Tips from Harvard Business Review, by clicking here.

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