Life is full of trade offs and constraints. The best in class are experts in managing these constraints while maximizing their outcomes. But we realize only in hindsight that it may be our ‘self awareness’, which may be stopping us from becoming aware or missing these constraints and exploring innovative solutions.
In one of my recent coaching conversations, the individual running a business unit was reviewing his latest unit performance with key KPI’s and scorecard. With most key indicators green, he was worried about the red ones and how to move the needle on them.
PROBLEM and SOLUTION
As part of the coaching conversations, we started exploring and zoomed out to his awareness about all the parts of the broader system, and how much he was aware of the various constraints in the system. The question we discussed was really simple.
“What are the Key Constraints for this system ?”
As he reflected on this, it became apparent that he was clearly missing out few constraints which were hiding in plain sight, but were overlooked. He had missed them in the deeper execution challenges and delivery focused agenda. As a coach, you are always aware of how various subsystems are all interconnected and systems thinking is a key skill to build up this base. If you wish to know more, you can read how you build Communities of Practice ( and think of all the actors in the system)
The next question was simple but thought provoking for the individual .
“Can we change the constraints of the system ?”
This simple “reflection’ and “self awareness” was key for him to observe the system dynamics and take a fresh look at his KPI’s, and readjust them to reflect the new insights.
Sometimes we have to zoom out and become an observer of the SYSTEM, without any attachment and this self-awareness is the KEY to the insights.
So if you are struggling with managing your constraints, then try to become more “SELF AWARE”, and with that expanded awareness you will be able to manage your constraints much better.
To know more or understand about how you can build your self awareness, reach out to me for your coaching needs or subscribe to my blog , and feel free to share your feedback in the comments below..