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The Mindset of Unsuccessful Tech Leaders

Don’t let these personality traits show up in your professional environment

When stressful times occur and daily routines get disrupted, many individuals struggle with staying the best version of themselves.

Leaders are the ones who are hit with the change of their professional environment the most, and because of that, it’s easy to start showing personality traits that could negatively affect one’s business.

Psychologist Robert Hogan describes these personality traits as the “dark side” of your personality. In a nutshell, those are counterproductive behavioural tendencies that emerge during times of high stress and are essentially coping mechanisms people use to manage these situations.

Why is it important to understand this theory? The company Hogan Assessments* is a market leader in providing personality tests that examine the personality of talents from every angle, the bright and the dark side so that work performance can be predicted at all times. With continuous research, they’ve helped identify risk factors and behaviours that affect work performance and that individuals often show when put under pressure. It’s essential to get an understanding of these personality traits and to recognize their occurrence so that their impact on someone’s professional life is minimized.

The tech leader and the thoughts he needs to avoid

Working on your thoughts is the first step when working on your mindset. What you think, you become. Below we are going to present you a few typical thoughts that stem from the mindset of unsuccessful tech leaders who give too much room to their dark personality traits in times of distress.

I am the only one capable of solving this problem.

This thought is dangerous for many reasons. Firstly, the ideas of others get discounted which can show arrogance and a lack of respect for your team. Secondly, why put this kind of pressure on yourself? It is not possible for you to be an omniscient individual. Also, try determining the difference between “being confident” and “being arrogant”. An easy way to do that is seeing how your thoughts impact others around you: your confidence is inspiring your team, your arrogance is turning them down and can easily lead you to be ignorant.

I can do this all by myself.

Really? Again, why put this pressure on yourself and generate even more stress which could lead to more dark thoughts that will impact your mindset negatively? Maybe you are very competent and a hard-working individual, but having unrealistic expectations will beat you down eventually - latest when you start failing at your attempts. Save yourself from these thoughts, consult your peers for advice and seek support. That aren’t signs of weaknesses, that’s what a team is for.

If they did their part, I would have done mine.

Of course, in most cases, you don’t think this because you have “bad character” and enjoy blaming others. We blame others because this way we want to explain how and why some setbacks occurred, or we use that as a method to avoid reflecting our own behaviour. However, try to take responsibility and start with yourself and what you could have done better and what you still can do to get the task done. Delegate differently, or prioritize and structure your goals another way. There are many techniques you can use to execute your ideas efficiently.

My way of doing things is the right way.

Just think about all the lost opportunities and ideas that you don’t hear because you are not ready to really listen to your team. Your team, or your community in general, is made of competent and smart individuals who can help you achieve higher levels of success. Sharing knowledge and organising brainstorming sessions can help your performance grow, both in the short and in the long term. Give others a chance to speak up and sparkle.

When talking about these specific thoughts, it is possible to connect them with individuals from the technology sector because research has shown that CEO’s within the tech industry often show the same personality traits and score high scores on the Bold and Imaginative scales, which could, in times of stress, lead to the mindset we’ve described above.

Like we’ve said, don’t let these thoughts occur and define your mindset because they can easily lead to negative outcomes in your professional world. Being aware of your potential personality derailers is a big help in staying your best self, both at work and in your personal life.

Now, don’t get this wrong - implementing some of these practices won’t just let you “stay good”, but will provide you so much space to upgrade and “become even better”. Being open for a change and having the mindset of a successful entrepreneur we’ve described in our latest market research about Croatian tech entrepreneurs and their expectations in the pandemic is going to help you manage all these challenges you are facing right now.

What is the fastest way to upgrade your career and defeat these thoughts?

A lot of self-reflection needs to be done to get to the core of your mindset and to upgrade your skills, competencies and career dreams. You can always choose to dive into this challenge alone, but we would advise you to consider a professional Consultant to follow you on this path. Talentarium is providing tech leaders with a career consulting program called Career FFWD that helps them identify their personality traits, interests, values ​​and abilities. Through coached sessions and materials organised by experienced psychologists, leaders are able to enhance their competencies and manage their careers and their professional environment more effectively. Career FFWD is intended not only for individuals who are experiencing difficulties in their careers but also for everyone who is aware of the constant need for agile adaptation and the continuous personal development in a dynamic and changing job market that is keeping the stress level high and is presenting them new challenges all the time.

The pandemic is a great opportunity to invest in yourself and seek support while battling the new normal and its challenges. Think about your current mindset and career, maybe it’s time to upgrade your thoughts, standards and wishes, just to be able to achieve so much more from all of this what’s happening today.

* Interested in purchasing Hogan Assessments and getting new personality insights? Leave us a ping, too. We can help you out. As Talentarium is an official distributor for Hogan Assessments on the CEE market, Talentarium Consultants are available to consult HR Managers or tech companies about implementing Hogan in their talent acquisition or performance evaluation processes.