“Discernment can be described as the ability to find the root of the matter, and it relies on intuition as well as rational thought. Discernment is an indispensable quality for any leader who desires to maximize effectiveness.”—John Maxwell
In “The 21 Indispensable Qualities of a Leader” Maxwell goes onto talk about the value of practicing discernment.
Over the years in my personal business coaching practice I have observed clients with a great deal of discernment. They always see the opportunities before others and they also see the dangers before others. Whether you are a self-employed business owner, entrepreneur, solo professional, corporate manager or corporate executive discernment can serve you well personally and professionally.
Discernment—Get to the Heart of the Matter
Whether you are starting your own business, running a small business or working in a large corporation you are required to lead in some shape or form. The way you lead is to get to the heart of whatever is holding you or your organization back from progress. Most of us have to deal with complexity and some chaos daily.
It’s hard to get a complete picture to get to the heart of the matter. You have to use discernment to complete a partial picture by using your intuition to fill in the missing pieces. Only when you do that can you get to the heart of the matter.
Discernment Will Enhance Your Problem Solving Ability
If you can see the root issue of a problem, you are much more likely to able to solve it. As a leader, the closer you are to working in your strength areas the stronger your intuition will be to see root causes. And if you are not in your areas of strength have team members who are strong in the areas you are not who can tap into their discernment to find the root causes.
Discernment—It’s Head and Heart
Management consultant, Robert Heller, has this advice: “Never ignore a gut feeling, but never believe that it’s enough.” Discernment isn’t relying on intuition alone, nor is it relying only on intellect. Discernment allows you to use your head and your heart to find the best option.
Discernment Will Allow You To Expand Your Opportunities
In examining small business, corporate or personal success it is easy to see that people who lack discernment are seldom in the right place at the right time. Great leaders may appear to be lucky to some observers. Or, as I believe, they create their own luck as the result of discernment. They see the road block or opportunity and use their experience, intellect, and their intuition, instincts to lead themselves and others to a solution.
How do you develop better discernment? First, develop an overall awareness of what is going on. Secondly, be educated. Be educated not only about the people but the subject. Sometimes online training, business training, business courses and self-development courses can help. But, in most instances, discernment comes from developing the skill of becoming a keen observer.
Discernment will allow you not only to expand your opportunities to lead but to expand your vision as to possible solutions. Be a leader. Develop the skill of discernment. You are more likely to be in the right place at the right time with discernment.