Perspective taking is putting yourself in someone else’s shoes. Think about how you impact others: In your interactions, do you tend to leave your colleagues more engaged and motivated, or deflated and stressed? Particularly when someone else annoys you, take a deep breath and ask yourself why a reasonable person in that context might do the same thing. Perspective taking is the foundation of deepening compassion.
While perspective taking occurs in your own head, perspective seeking is a dialogue where you ask others about their thoughts and feelings. Collaboration requires sincere perspective seeking. As a leader, it’s about summoning the courage to ask others about your strengths and challenges.
Often seen as the engines that fuel self-awareness, perspective taking and seeking are both critical to increasing leadership capacity.