Observations

  • self-awareness leads to excellent, ethical leadership

  • self-deception is the attempt to hide some truth from oneself to achieve a benefit

  • self-deception creates a barrier between the person who seeks self-awareness and what’s real

  • self-aware leaders are less prone to corrupt acts and unethical behavior

  • organizations must help leaders attain self-awareness by focusing on the sequence of events and influencers leading up to a leader’s ethical decisions

  • because a leader knows what’s right and ethical does not mean they will act accordingly

  • excessive positivity in a leader’s message may hide their true, nefarious intentions

  • one lie may lead to more lies and serve to increase a self-deceptive leader’s comfort with the practice

  • authentic leaders are confident in their morality and express that to followers through engagement

  • leaders and followers influence each other to be ethical

  • before a leader faces an ethical dilemma, they should be molded into an ethical person

  • charismatic leaders inspire others to greatness; they are energetic, confident, and determined

  • strong, charismatic personalities may also be egotistic

  • leaders with high self-esteem and high self-efficacy are confident in their abilities to lead

  • if self-confidence is achieved under false pretenses, the leader may become overconfident in their leadership abilities

  • self-deception can help a leader adapt their self-identity to fit within an external reality

  • control, or the perception of control, is important to a leader

  • a false sense of control through self-deception is a fleeting safe haven

  • the key to a leader’s success is in the trusting relationships they build with followers, colleagues, superiors, and customers

  • consistency between words and deeds helps build trust

  • one’s accurate self-evaluation is the most important contributor to a 360-degree feedback system

  • regular feedback from many sources helps a leader to more accurately monitor their performance

  • the desire for accurate self-understanding is more the norm than is self-deception

  • leaders can improve the quality of their decisions by understanding their strengths, weaknesses, values, and beliefs

  • multi-rater, 360-degree feedback gives a leader a more precise picture of their leadership attributes

  • misdiagnosis of one’s leadership attributes is problematic, as it contributes to self-deception

  • leaders must first understand that a decision they face has ethical implications before they make an ethics-based decision

  • viewing an element of a problem as simply practical and not ethical to avoid the ethical nature of the problem is a failure of leadership

  • an accurate self-assessment by the leader is critical to the veracity of 360-degree multi-rater feedback

  • a leader’s development is dependent on discovering and acknowledging the discrepancies between their assessment of themselves and others’ assessments of them as a leader

  • self-awareness helps leaders build positive relationships with followers

  • self-awareness is about understanding how one’s performance affects others

  • feedback is one of the most effective tools at showing a leader their blind spots

  • upward feedback enlightens a leader to the unique perceptions of their direct reports

  • the effect a leader has on others is influenced by the honest self-evaluation of their behavior and the empathy they feel and show to their colleagues

  • a leader projecting a positive image may be attempting to achieve social approval of their behavior

  • a leader uses a communication strategy to convey their style and motivations to people inside and outside the organization

  • leaders must connect with followers to discover their followers’ needs and wants

  • leaders more interested in personal gain may manipulate others into believing their intentions are to serve the good of others

  • self-aware leaders are better able to anticipate how others view them, so they are better able to craft their message to their constituents and customers

  • a leader may try to project that they are ideal leaders and may do so by lying to others to falsely enhance their prestige

  • leaders may convey an excessively positive, even unrealistic message, to inspire followers

  • self-deceptive team members undermine the critical thinking needed by a team to affect organizational outputs

  • liars in a small group are at a disadvantage to their honest peers

  • teams comprised of self-aware individuals show greater team-level functioning and performance and are better able to avoid groupthink

  • a self-deceptive leader’s perception of reality may not match the reality of the organization

  • leaders may receive less honest feedback from employees that are fearful of the leader’s position and influence

  • leaders confident in their abilities, believing they are in control, may shun feedback that says otherwise

  • leaders should spend more time striving to achieve performance goals and less time protecting themselves from political dangers

  • organizations should avoid ambiguity and inconsistencies in the feedback collection process for a leader

  • people are more motivated to discover deception from others and less motivated to examine their ego for signs of self-deception

  • self-deceptive and others-deceptive behavior can be costly in interactions within a group

  • signs of deceptive behavior can leak out in the form of verbal, nonverbal, and written communication

  • narcissists, exhibiting greater levels of grandiosity, entitlement, dominance, and superiority, have a strong self-deceptive component to their personality

  • an individual is more likely to self-deceive when there is a high chance of getting caught in a lie they tell to others

  • there are different levels and degrees of deception and self-deception, and the degree to which one lies may depend on the level of their intended gain

  • deceiving oneself causes mental strain, resulting in a detrimental impact on future cognitive capabilities

  • individuals may be able to mentally compartmentalize information in an attempt to avoid dealing with unwanted information

  • strategic leaders constantly face complex situations and relationships

  • whether the truth lies at the conscious or subconscious level, it is important that leaders can recall it for future decision-making

  • self-deception is easier for the perpetrator than others-deception because, as the number of targets grows, so does the chances of getting caught

  • deception can be complicated and can become more so as the lies increase in frequency and severity

  • ignoring incoming information is one way to deal with discomforting or distracting stimuli

  • discarding, distorting, misremembering, or misrepresenting information while self-deceiving leads to blind spots

  • self-deceivers may distort their information-processing mechanisms in place of altering incoming truthful information

  • self-deceivers filter information during the information processing phase of data collection

  • self-deceiving leaders choose to avoid information that challenges their existing beliefs

  • cognitive biases, like bounded ethicality and confirmation bias, help self-deceiving leaders choose information that supports their desired views and outcomes

  • blind spots protect self-deceiving leaders from acknowledging information they don’t want to acknowledge

  • leaders with inflated views of themselves as leaders may find it difficult to accept negative feedback

  • failing to see relevant information contributes to a leader’s biased approach to decision-making

  • deceiving rivals and self-deception to protect and preserve one’s self-identity have had evolutionary value

  • self-deception is an adaptive trait that helps one adjust their identity to fit with their environment

  • narrowing one’s focus to information supporting already-held beliefs leads to irrational thought

  • intentionally corrupting information while collecting and storing the information will lead to distorted thought processes when the person must recall that information to make a decision

  • leaders may anchor new decisions to previous bad decisions to convince themselves and others that the outcomes are actually positive

  • self-deceiving leaders rationalize negative feedback to match with previously held notions

  • leaders may shift the blame for failure onto others to protect their ego and protect themselves from rejection

  • people often attribute success or failure in a self-serving manner; ascribing success to their skills and failure to circumstances or to less-competent constituents

  • self-deception adds the complicating factor of the target of the deception being that person’s memory recall protocol

  • the stress of making important decisions is confounded when the leader chooses to self-deceive

  • self-deception provides only temporary relief of decision-making stress

  • people generally fail to see the bias in their ethical decision-making

  • self-deception enables one to validate morally unjust behaviors so that it conforms to what others may see as more socially-palatable actions

  • demanding schedules make it more difficult for executives to act ethically

  • self-deception may have emerged in humans to protect them mentally from overwhelming stimulation

  • routinized self-deception, over a long term, may result in a psychological numbness to the practice

  • self-deception negatively impacts a leader’s performance

  • self-deceptive leaders are more likely to fall prey to someone else’s efforts to deceive them

  • over-estimating one’s abilities (seeing oneself as more capable than they are) and under-estimating one’s abilities (missing their strengths) both have deleterious effects

  • self-deception detaches one from reality

  • self-deception leads to an inefficient, fragmented mental system used to process information

  • by using self-deception as a means to deceive others, the self-deceiving leader may change their beliefs about the potential outcome of an action or scheme

  • the ultimate goal of self-deception is to deceive others

  • even if a person can separate their psyche into knowing and unknowing parts, one of these parts must be responsible for their malicious actions

  • the human default is to presume that others are being honest

  • people are not good at detecting deception

  • deceivers act differently when they attempt to deceive than when they go about normal, honest activities, and they may be unwitting of the differences

  • some believe that higher-ranking people in society are better at detecting deception than lower-ranking people

  • an organization may formally or informally foster an atmosphere of deception and corruption

  • organizational stressors and the need to achieve distinction may encourage a leader to focus inwardly

  • constant, high-pressure situations may weaken a leader’s will to act ethically

  • it is easier for a leader to commit future lies when their deceptions go undetected

  • like-minded groups misoriented in the same direction can feed a cycle of unethical behavior

  • some leaders have engrained in their psyche a process that is susceptible to errors in perceptual causation