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Assumption, Perception and Emotions – Three pillars of success and failure.

Our lives are made of different experiences and the way we experience the world around us, we create our own definition of this world. These experiences are formed by our own assumptions, perceptions, expectations, and emotions and most importantly the situation that drives it all.

As leaders we often experience difficult situations and lead to start assuming, perceiving and operating on emotions. This is the beginning of a failure of a leader and should take corrective measure to come out of it.

This is a basic operating principle of every human being and we operate on the 3 principals – Assumption, perception and Emotions. The question is how these 3 are interrelated –

1.      We assume in situations when there is insufficient data or lack of information

2.      Continued assumption leads to perceptions and this perception forms judgments

3.      Perception then lead to control our emotions and we start operating on our emotions and lose rationality.

The difference a leader can make is that he control this cycle and get emotionally aware of situations. These 3 areas can help you win or fail based on how you use them.

Let me explain this with an example:

A candidate applied for a job but with an assumption that the interviewer doesn’t want to offer the job to the candidate. During the interview, the interviewer started discussing about all the cons of being in the job which build up the assumption of the candidate. Gradually this assumption flipped to perception that the interviewer doesn’t like the candidate. All the questions or the suggestion from the interviewer were now suspicions. This is the time when the candidate was controlled by her emotions. The candidate started losing control and gave up on this interview.

This situation could have been handled effectively if the candidate was not operating on assumptions in the first place. The candidate also didn’t clarify nor asked for more information thus transparency was missing. The candidate could have gathered more data on why he/she is not the right fit for the job.

Some tips for controlling these 3 pillars:

1.      Assumption is required but only when there is lack of information or insufficient data.

2.      Assumptions can be made when you make quick decision and you do not have time.

3.      Perception are based on situation nothing else.

4.      Don’t judge people based on the perception.

5.      Self realize your emotions and understand your senses completely.

6.      Work with an open mind and express your emotion transparently.

Our leadership style is represented by our action and behavior. Our action and behavior are driven by this cycle of 3 important pillars. Ensure that we work on managing these pillars and succeed in our lives.

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