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Salesteam in front of computer

There is a reason the “find-the-hidden-objects” memes that are distributed on social media are so popular and widely circulated. Everyone wants to be the one to discover something no one else has. That’s fine for popular culture, where finding a cell phone on a rug or face in a painting has no impact on anything of value. In business, though, being able to pick out the hidden or obscured fine lines in contracts or picking up on subtle differences can make or break a deal, investment, merger, or more.

In my experience, great opportunities never come with a blinking, neon sign. Discernment, or, as Merriam-Webster says, the quality of being able to grasp and comprehend what is obscure, is a vital characteristic of successful CEOs. It allows them to truly see the root and heart of the situation, and to find an appropriate solution. You can find commonalities, creating systems with structure, which help to accurately predict similar situations in the future.

Discerning leaders can be the most AWESOME Leaders.

An entrepreneur with discernment is able to tell when their business, or involved parties, might be in jeopardy of a negative outcome or poor business results of an agreement. Discernment is more than a “gut feeling.” It requires both intellectual and emotional intelligence, and years of experience using both in a business setting. The goal is to be able to truly understand the underlying messages and tones of meetings and contracts, among other business components.  Read between the lines as well as  all the lines.

CEOs with high levels of discernment can be more respected leaders, as they are able to solve problems and decide upon the next best steps.  Chaos can be avoided not simply responded to.   Team members are more likely to take the cues from a CEO who has a track record of making appropriate decisions and responses.  Employees and customers tend to look up to these individuals as role models and examples.   Wouldn’t you love to earn more respect and save time on your important mission?

Some people have an innate high level of discernment, but that doesn’t mean the trait can’t be learned. Incorporating a few practices will, over time, help to improve the ability to discern and decide in any situation.

5 Tips to Develop Better Discernment:

  1. Personal development courses and books are important for CEOs. Classes that teach leadership skills, personality traits, and interpersonal communications will give you the scientific and psychological background needed for better business analysis. Get a coach to give feedback.
  2. Begin paying more attention during meetings. Listen with your heart, your head and your two ears.  Noting an individual’s mood and the consistent correlation between certain moods and actions can help you begin to predict the individual’s next course of action.
  3. Watch people and pay attention to their patterns, expressions and actions. Regular, constant observation is a necessary part of increasing discernment. Getting in the practice of watching and internally analyzing before responding will help a CEO develop the habit of pausing and thinking in more important situations.
  4. Read more about your intuition.    I recommend listening to or reading Blink by Malcom Gladwell and Conscious Business by Fred Kofman. If you like to get to the meat fast, you will love Blinkist a free app of executive book summaries.   Click our link for a discount on the premier version of the free app.http://jump.blinkist.com/aff_c?offer_id=2&aff_id=2568

5.  Stay off auto pilot. To become more discerning, leaders stay present and focus on the person or task at hand.  Be more deliberate, thoughtful and focused.    Being “slammed” is so last millennium and multitasking is for sissies anyway.

Whether you are about to begin your journey, stepping down from a billion-dollar enterprise, or searching for the perfect person to fill a new role, I would be interested in learning more about you.  DeDominic & Associates is a respected, award winning and discerning business coaching firm.  If you are too, we would love to consider being  with you every step of the way.   You’ll  need top talent and confidential advice when you are collaborating with world leaders, important customers and making career breaking/making decisions.

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