Episode #05 | Open Up Your Blind Spots With The Powerful Johari Window
Welcome to the Dare to Scale show with me Warsha
and me, Evan.
So, what is Dare to Scale? Over the years that we’ve been coaching founders and business owners, much like yourselves, we work through a framework called Dare to Scale
Dare to Scale. Indeed, that framework has helped loads of business owners. And that is what this show is all about. So, put on your big picture thinking hat.
Oh, and your headphones, and come join us and enjoy the ride.
Hey hey hey, welcome to the podcast.
Hey, thanks for joining us today. How you doing everybody?
Hi everybody. Good to see you.
Good to see you. So, Evan.
I have a question for you.
How well, do you know yourself?
I think so? Very well, who knows me better than me.
Haha. Yes, dear.
What? So how well, do you think somebody else knows you
Look in fairness very well, because they see things that? Well, my mom always used to say, we don’t see ourselves as others see us. And you know, we can’t see our own faults.
Or someone better characteristics.
It really is about awareness. Isn’t it? our self-awareness?
So, we’re talking about this today? Because today’s topic is that Johari Window
Johari. Indeed. Wonderful tool.
It is. So, the Johari Window was developed by two psychologists Joseph Luft and Harrington Ingham, in the 1950s would you believe.
Long time back? Oh, I just got it. Jo, and Hari
Jo and Hari Joseph and Harrington ha, very imaginative. And anyway, so the Johari Window is a wonderful tool to be used. As that self-awareness tool. It’s a journey of self-discovery. And you will hear me say journey of self-discovery several times during this podcast, because today’s episode because it really is exploring that unknown, about ourselves, if you will.
Which is part of the feedback and growing
Part of the feedback and growing and really expanding that area. There really expanding that circle. And some people call it stepping outside your comfort zone, knowing a little bit more about yourself expanding that awareness circle.
Absolutely. I mean, you may have strengths that you weren’t aware of. And it’s very easy for people to pick out, you know, things that are not quite so good. But definitely strengths.
Like you’re very good at seeing potential in somebody. Like if somebody in the team is like that person will be really great at x, whether it could be sales could be some whatever, right?
But there’s a bunch of things that you see that skill. Well, you see the potential there, and those people don’t see it for themselves. And when you have the discussion, that’s partly what we’re talking about here.
That is true. It’s interesting, you were talking about this, and I was really saying how we both complement each other.
In our strengths as well.
Hehehe boring accounting.
So, while I am very much that public face, if you will.
Perfectly comfortable being in front of the camera of being in the public eye. And I’m really very comfortable doing that
At the same time. And like you were saying, I’m great at spotting opportunities as well, just not just in people, but in circumstances situations. And I’m really very quick at spotting opportunities. So, it is wonderful. And we’ve been through this ourselves, haven’t we? And that’s why today we play to our strengths.
And we complement each other. And we have come to accept our strengths and accept our it sounds like a very corporate language when you say your strengths and your weaknesses and whatever. But it really is we play to offense.
It’s very much complimentary.
There are strengths within the doing space, that I will definitely pick up those strengths and the idea of space. ideas come to me a lot more slowly. And you run a lot more quickly. But that’s a good thing. When we work and we run together, we moderate each other and we head in the right direction at a good pace.
That’s true. And we came to this after after few. Well, it’s true, because we really had to open ourselves up to first of all, as a couple, we decided to sit down and work on the Johari window for ourselves. And only when we presence some of our strengths and our not so strengths, if you will, we began to own that space.
Definitely. Any couple that works together will definitely run into this problem.
It really is establishing where the strength but also, look, I mean, this is a separate topic for discussion, but it’s also establishing who does what, right. And because you have your strengths, it’s a lot easier than to say, you know, what you play in this sandbox area, whatever it is.
I play in this one and combined, you know, we’re covering a lot more of the business.
Yeah, that is true. So, let’s go back a little bit, and actually explain what the Johari Window is, because it looks like.
I am sure the listeners would like that
We are running away with our own little story and running away with our own little story. So, what does the Johari Window look like?
So think of this as a two by two table, where the top left cell is called the arena, or the public space,
The public space. Yeah.
And the square next to that on the right side is called the blind spot.
Okay, so where do I sit in this?
Let me explain what the four squares are
Okay so blind spot. Yeah.
And the square under the public space. So, the bottom left square is called the façade.
Or the private space. And the bottom right is called the unknown.
Okay, great. So public, blind, private and unknown.
That’s the one. So, what happens in the public space or the arena, as it’s called, is something that you know about yourself
And people around, you also know that about yourself.
All right, okay. Okay.
So dedicated may think I’m dedicated.
Yeah, that’s the one
And in the blind spot is something that you don’t know about yourself, but somebody else knows about you.
Okay, yeah, fine. There’s like feedback, right?
It’s like feedback. Exactly. So, I think I’m very open and accommodative. Okay, and many times, I’m told, actually, you’re very assertive.
So, it could be as similar. Okay, fine. Yeah. So, it’s just a different perceptions.
It’s different perceptions. And also, it’s fairly contextual. So, while when I am in the team space, so when I am showing up as a leader of my team, I’m actually putting the team in front. And my team knows that and that’s how we function.
So if there is something, a decision has to be taken, I asked him his opinion, and it’s an agreement and feedback. But when I am in this space, we are individually developing something, I am very much my own master, and I want to do it my way. So again, it’s very contextual, this may be too much information. but what I’m getting at is something that you know about yourself, no, but something that you don’t know about yourself, but somebody else does goes in the blind spot.
Okay? So, it comes to your awareness,
It comes to your awareness, and something that you know about yourself, and you have chosen not to share it with someone else goes in the facade, or the private space,
Which is a bottom left square.
And something neither of you know, or no one knows, goes in the unknown square.
so that all makes nice sense. And so you’re aware of things not aware of things, all of that, so that’s fine. So that’s a lovely theory.
We’ll come to that in just one minute. Remember that this Johari Window can really be used as that journey of self-discovery, again, in most areas of your life, once you know that this concept, once you know about this concept, just by listening to this concept, as we talk about this today, we have already brought to our awareness, this model.
So, it’s a possibility.
It’s a possibility, because we mostly most of us on this beautiful earth go about life thinking, Well, I know everything, and I am who I am. And I am an open book. we very rarely are an open book.
Certainly not. That’s true.
So just by listening to this, just by getting to know about the Johari Window, we have peel that onion layer.
Yeah, So, this pretty much will bring about changes in your relationship, your feedback, and how you choose to share and what you don’t choose to share and whatever.
In all areas of your life, but be it with your spouse, or your partner, or your extended family or your different sort of networks that you hang out with, and most importantly, in your business.
Well, of course that’s why we are here
With you teams. That’s why we’re here. Because the minute you play with this in your company, you just watch how strong those conversations become how clear those communications become how people begin fearlessly owning that space.
Because you have presence something that may be people didn’t want to bring out. And a little bit more on that as we go along, because I know you have a story to share with us as well about that.
So, a little bit more on what we mean by that.
So, let me explain what now.
So, this is like the application.
this is like the application.
Know how to use this in practice, what
Do you do with it? This can be a very simple test. And while you can get professionals to come and administer this test, across your teams, this can actually be done just for you. Pick the test with your trusted team member, sit down and work through this. It’s all about half an hour, 45 minutes, set aside an hour for example, with conversations and everything. So, what happens?
Out of a the prescribed 50 odd attributes or objectives, you choose five or six, six.
Which are most applicable to you, according to you.
Okay, so my top five, my top six, whatever it is, this is a thing, dedicated, logical, whatever.
Yeah, so, you pick your top six,
And you get your team member, whoever you’re sitting with, to pick the top six, what they see in you.
Yeah. So, you could be friendly, it could be logical, it could be brave, it could be caring, and so on. When you’re done with the test, you pick the most common ones. If there are common ones,
They’re most likely our common ones. And those attributes are written in that arena or the public quadrant.
Of course, because both people because you and I both agree that I’m logical, free..
Yeah. So, something that you have not picked, but your team member has picked goes in the blind spot,
which makes sense, something I’m not aware of.
Yeah. Something that you have picked but the team member has not picked goes into that facade.
Absolutely not telling you that. I’m sorry. I have no, I have no, because it is on the list no.
It is on the list. And something that nobody has picked, which is the bar
So the rest of the words.
The rest of the words go in the unknown. So, either they are irrelevant
They may be
But just don’t apply.
Yeah. So again, remember, just so we know, we’re clear. When you are picking those attributes, something that you think I am most likely this will go in the public arena. And the same way your team members and you are most likely that
Oh, you’re most this
It’s sort of like there’s agreement on that particular their own space.
And then there’s the feedback. And all this is what I’m feeling.
That’s the one
So essentially, you’re expanding as best you can that public space?
Absolutely, that’s the point
Because when you take the feedback, and you given the sharing,
Right, the overall public space actually increases. So, there’s less unknown,
There is less unknown. Yeah, that’s exactly what this is. So just so this becomes a little bit more clearer on what that application is. So now you have done the test. And now what, and at this stage, I want you to share that story. This was a whole episode in that time, isn’t it in your previous life in the corporate world?
Yeah, this was quite some years ago. And it was very, very interesting. There was a team member, technically very, very good.
And came across as aloof. Now, what was interesting was, we did this exercise. And the hilarious thing as such was, so I put aloof and for him that was in the blind spot. And he shared, he was reserved. So, what do you mean by that?
Reflective and quiet
Yeah. But it was reserved.
There was a specific reason for that. And so we started talking about that. And in his previous job.
The team were not encouraged to speak up.
So he’d actually learned behavior.
In the previous work. So, when it became apparent, that’s that’s not how it works here. If you have something to say it’s important to say it.
Because unless it’s like a question, the only stupid question is the one that’s not asked. You know what I mean right.
So if you have something to say, say it.
And was waiting for permission to speak
Seriously okay. I understand how some companies can do that.
So what was aloof to me actually wasn’t that at all.
In the end and even though it was reserved, it turned out when, when the guy knew he could actually speak.
It negated both of those things. And suddenly, there was a lot to be said, it’s like, Dude, what happened there you know.
And it made the world of difference.
Absolutely did so it’s well worth having.
These kind of sort of tests or exercises, right? Just to get that awareness
Conversation. Let’s just call it
Because that’s what this is. And I remember what how did this even come about in those days because that was quite conversation that you and I used to have about this because you would come home and talk about this. You like that guy? Huh? He was really good at what he did you wanted, you knew there was more to him than meets the eye. And he wanted to explore that. You wanted to mentor him.
Exactly. So? And that’s the point.
Yeah. And something else that I remember you used to say, is that is that little bit of an imbalance in energy within the team?
Because the rest of the team were fairly open and unreservedly shared their opinions.
Some louder than they really should have been. And that, again, was a separate conversation. And the trouble with that also is the louder ones can actually overpower
A good person.
So, there was something there, we had the conversation, and the dynamics definitely changed.
And it was for the better the entire team benefited.
And because it was led from you from the top, because you then during the conversations actually paused the meeting, and directed a question at this person and waited for them to actually talk about it. So naturally, the message to the team was,
Exactly yeah yeah
There is somebody else’s table. And of course, this was public knowledge. And you this was a conversation that you had with the rest of the team. So, the dynamic changed quite a bit.
And that guy’s gone on to do great things. And in life after that.
That is so wonderful. So, you really use the Johari window, to put something out there for you both to literally pull the curtain. And so, let’s talk about it. You don’t have to hide here anymore.
And it’s so lovely that you did this, because this doesn’t normally happen in a corporate world anyway.
That’s true. Well, it may involve HR in a very different sort of context. And it could work out to be a little more difficult than just having that one to one feedback.
Sort of feedback and you know, building your own team.
Yeah. And preferably done with the person that they work with, rather than sitting with somebody else in HR and going through this.
Then you don’t want to talk
And then it becomes impersonal, then it becomes it takes a different direction, when HR is involved in a conversation like this, because it then it’s directly related to performance. Anyway, that’s a whole another absolute life
That opens up.
So, within your own team, you can definitely have this sort of framework, and it’s okay to set the ground rules where communication
It is okay to put on the table. And it’s it’s about removing emotion, and essentially just having an open honest conversation.
And the same thing, I think you’ve also got to mention that the same thing actually can happen between departments.
It does, it can happen between different departments.
In corporate world, oh, dear God, you know, I mean, my background is finance, that sort of CFO space. And, you know, working with the sales department used to be quite interesting.
But then, you know, I don’t fully understand what that team needs to deliver
What sales right, but how they operate and how they get there is something that’s a little bit alien to me, you know,
And the finance space, or, you know, sticklers for this and the next thing, you know, and that can be really difficult.
So, what you saying really is describing what certain professions? How do you mold a mindset?
Oh, absolutely. Absolutely. So, the rest of the entire company, we would look at the finance space ago, you know, sort of dull and boring, but then that’s fine.
Because you’re dealing with auditors and all sorts of stuff.
And like, half the rest of the company don’t know what.
No, and you got to tally right down to the last penny.
So, of course, we are sticklers for what you do,
Because that’s what your job calls for.
And then, you know, like, I used to work in hospitality. So, you know, in the food and beverage department, you had some absolutely wonderful people, people
Dealing with the guests and serving coffee. And just, you know, I mean, one of the barman was just how he did it. But he got to know individual guests. And when he knew they were coming back.
And he knew that they liked, I don’t know that in the UAE with a drive magazine.
Right? So, it’s a vehicle sort of magazine, he would actually go and get it out of his own pocket, he actually going by the magazine, when the guy rocked up, not only would he have his drink.
Now the drink that that person actually always wanted, he would also have the magazine. So, things like that customer service.
It’s not so much that is alien to me. It just doesn’t come as naturally.
You know, so it’s part of that.
Such a lovely story
Anyway, we digress
We do again.
So yes, this can be used this framework, this model can be used as groups as well, to encourage that conversation to encourage that transparency to encourage smoother communication between departments because departments,
If you don’t encourage that conversation, if that doesn’t flow from top down from the leaders, very quickly, as the company grows very quickly, departments begin to work in silos anyway, because they think work, nobody understands how why work, just.
Yeah yeah yeah of course.
You know, just as when we coach or when we done our peer to peer boards. So many founders why while they know this will be great for them, one of the first thing they say is Oh, but nobody knows how my business runs?
No, of course not. And when they sharing something, so let me give you the 20 minute sort of synopsis of my business. No,
No, you don’t
It doesn’t work like that, because of business in a way
Is a business.
Right? Same fundamentals are no different industries.
We digress again. So, we’re coming back to this model, and how that can now be used between departments. So, you run the same exercise, as a group,
And so two groups run this exercise on each other.
And some of the things that that are brought out into the sunlight, are just so wonderful when teams suddenly start seeing a wholly different perspective about the others.
And I’ve seen magic happen in some of the companies that I have coached as well, as a result of this. So, it’s a wonderful, wonderful model to use.
Very, very, very powerful.
So, for you, guys, thank you for listening to the end. And here’s a little bonus for you. Head over to daretoscale.fm/5. And over there, you will find a little downloadable. Click on that, because that will give you you will find a little downloadable, that downloadable will have the list of those attributes or those adjectives, and the framework for you to print, sit down with that trusted team member. And for yourself, not absolutely set aside an hour and just go through this have a wonderful positive conversation. And remember the point of this, expand that public or arena space arena box. And what do you do after that? come back and tell us how it went?
But of course, that’s what you do. Every time I come back and tell us
Come back and tell us how it went
It really is? And also run the exercise for sure. And maybe also let us know, when was the last time you actually positively and actively sought feedback?
Oh, that’s a nice.
You know, it’s quite interesting. So, what did I do? Well, and what could go better next time? It’s simple question like that? Because that’s part of your blind spot and fixing your blind spot.
Right. It’s all part of the same framework. And let us know, when was the last time you actually went and got.
You know, you actually just gave a wonderful feedback framework over there.
True. what went well? And what could go better?
Yeah. And I would say normally what people call that is constructive criticism. I would stay away from calling it criticism of any kind.
Because it’s not criticism. While we can decorate it with fancy words like constructive criticism, you are actually criticizing somebody. And that’s not what is feedback. Feedback is what went well. And what could go better next time.
No one if you really want to, you know, get out there. It’s actually feed forward. Because we’re not going backwards. We’re going forward.
Very nice. Very nice.
So yeah, look, it is very, very powerful. And it’s positive in what you’re trying to achieve.
Because there are no failures. There is only feedback? Feed forward
Very nice, even better. So, to recap, come back and tell us how did this exercise go? And when was the last time you actually sought that feedback?
And accepted that feedback
I like that
Yeah. Fabulous. Thank you again for listening in. And we will see you next time with a brand-new topic and a brand-new conversation with me Warsha
and me, Evan. See ya bye,
Hey, thanks for joining us and listening right to the end.
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