Self-awareness is a critical aspect of becoming a global leader as self-awareness allows us to understand our own and other’s emotions. This awareness then further develops into perceiving, generating, and regulating emotions and these are generally things we do to maintain and improve relationships with others (Pizarro & Salovey, 2002.) Black (1999) would tend to agree as he notes the greater the need to integrate people and activities around the world, the more important it is for global leaders to connect emotionally with people.
Being self-aware and emotionally connected is the foundation for another essential global leader competency that of social judgment. Social judgment skills refer to such competencies as seeing the big picture (Jokinen, 2005), or the ability to switch perspectives and understand global interdependencies (Brake, 1997). Moreover, it is argued that these skills lead to cross-cultural sensitivity, expertise in hiring, building, motivating, and retaining talent in different cultures (Goleman, 2000). The question remains if this skill or set of skills is so powerful why has the U.S. not done a very good job of developing leaders with these skills? One potential answer is that in different countries there are varied styles of human interaction; in the U.S. the tendency is for the individual to stand out (Smith, 2001), in this environment the desire to learn about and from another is not emphasized.
Black, J. S. (1999). Global explorers: The next generation of leaders. New York: Routledge.
Brake, T. (1997). The global leader: Critical factors for creating the world class organization. Irwin Professional Pub.
Goleman, D. (2000). Leadership that gets results. Harvard Business Review, 78(2), 78-93.
Jokinen, T. (2005). Global leadership competencies: a review and discussion. Journal of European Industrial Training, 29(3), 199-216.
Pizarro, D. & Salovey, P. (2002). Being and Becoming a Good Person: The Role of Emotional Intelligence in Moral Development and Behavior. Improving Academic Achievement, 17.
Smith, P. G. (2001). Communication holds global teams together. Machine Design, 73(14), 70-74.