How do you become more focused on others?

22 October 2015 4:35:55 PM NZDT



Two participants in a leadership workshop at the University of Michigan were asked to analyse how they changed from being self-focused to being focused on others.


Here are their answers:

Participant A
I realized how much I needed people, and I became more concerned about them. I was better able to hear what they were saying. I talked to them, not just from my head, but also from my heart. My colleagues responded. Today, I am still close to those people.

Participant B
As I started to grow and feel more self-confident I became better at relating to others. At work, I now ask more of people than I ever did before, but I also give them far more support. I care about them, and they can tell.


How would you have answered?


Use this checklist to analyse how you face the challenge of changing from being
self-focused to ‘others-focused’:


• Sacrificing personal interests for the common good.
• Seeing the potential in everyone.
• Trusting others and fostering independence.
• Empathising with people’s needs.
• Expressing concern.
• Supporting people.
• Feeling a sense of shared identity.
• Engaging in participative conversations


It may be hard to admit but do we put our own needs above those of the whole? When pursuit of our own interests controls our relationships, we erode the trust of others in us. Although people may comply with our wishes, they no longer derive energy from their relationship with us.


When we put the good of the organization first, people notice, and we gain respect and trust. Others, in turn, become more likely to put the collective good first. When they do, tasks that previously seemed impossible become doable!


Source: On Managing Yourself: Moments of greatness, Robert E. Quinn

Posted in UBT Updates By

Erica Field