A common theme I hear among leaders, especially senior leaders, is: “Imposter Syndrome.” Believe it.
I talk to leaders all over the world. I teach leaders at one of the top business schools. I work with incredibly smart, capable and successful CEOs. And, a common topic is leaders telling me that any day now, they think they’re going to be found out for the ‘fraud’ that they believe they are (and by ‘fraud’, I mean they are telling me that feel they don’t know what they are doing, they don’t have all the answers they think they need to have, they often feel they are the least smart person in the room, etc.).
In the world of leadership, this is called “Imposter Syndrome”. You might be saying to yourself right now; “Yep, I have that!” I have thought that of myself too before.
Let’s explore it for a moment. Every single new role you take on in your career comes with a learning curve. Even when you change companies and have the same role, there is a learning curve. Yes, even the best CEOs on the planet go through it. Those that say they don’t, will lie about other things too.
Have you sat in a room of supposedly ‘smart’ people (you know, the ones that use words you have never heard before and talk in a business language that might as well be a foreign language) and you have this really cool idea that comes to you but… you hold the idea in. Then some brainiac across the table blurts your exact idea and everyone in the room says: “Wow! That is a great idea!” Well yep, that has happened to me as well.
Here’s the thing…. you are good at what you do. In fact, it is your hard work, strengths, wisdom and hopefully emotional intelligence that got you the role. Start trusting yourself!
Robert Murray is a Vancouver, BC based Business Strategy Consultant, #1 Best Selling Author, International Keynote Speaker, and TEC Top Speaker of the Year for 2018. For further advice, insight and inspiration on how to unlock your inner leader, connect with Robert on LinkedIn.
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