Leadership Series – Exploring The Opposite

CPA Blog |

As accountants, one of the most challenging things for our accountant brain is to be open to seeing things differently.  We are trained to look at the facts of various situations and formulate an opinion and/or a solution.  The issue though is that once we believe we’ve found an answer, we have a difficult time being open to seeing things differently.

Once our accountant brain believes it has the answer to a question, it’s rare that we will also give equal air time to the fact that the opposite could be as true or truer, especially when it comes to our beliefs.  But the importance of exploring the opposite – which means being open to the notion that the opposite of your story could be as true or truer than your current story – is one of the best leadership skills you can develop.

The truth is that your thoughts, beliefs, and opinions are not facts, they just feel that way.  When you learn to question your thoughts, beliefs, and opinions, you become much better at leading others to do the same.

Why does this matter?  Because whether you realize it or not, you are the “labeler” of your life.  There are the facts in the world and then there are your opinions and interpretations of those facts.  Those opinions and interpretations are the labels you put on the facts, but they are not the facts.

You label something or someone as “good” or “bad” all day, every day.  But as a leader, the labels you give things also affect those you lead.  By learning to explore the opposite of your thoughts, beliefs, and opinions, you allow yourself and others to look at things differently as well.

When you look at things differently, you open yourself and others up to possibilities.  And the reason this is important is because there is power in possibilities.

When you are willing to explore the opposite of the story you tell about things, you become much more open and powerful as a leader.  By exploring the opposite, you give others a chance to open their minds to the opposite as well. 

Be willing to be wrong about your assumptions and give others the guidance and support to be wrong as well. You just might be surprised at what you discover. 

Great leaders explore the opposite of what they think and believe – are you allowing yourself and others to explore the opposite?

Let’s be honest – the world needs better leaders at work and at home.  Are you ready to become a better leader?

Source – “The 15 Commitments Of Conscious Leadership”