A strong CV + smart individual + good interview. We all believed we had found the perfect candidate. But as we debriefed, the little voice in my head insisted something didn’t feel right.

Months later, the same person turned into a toxic element for the team. And it took a huge collective effort to fix the situation.

Have you ever missed an opportunity because you ignored your gut feeling? It turns out that you’re not alone. Only 62% of top leaders trust their instincts before making decisions.

It’s not easy to figure out why intuition is the ideal asset for leaders when you’ve been educated to rely on data. But your “inner knowing” is stronger than you think. Our brains have fast-thinking mechanisms and scientific research proves they are no less reliable than the rational mind.

In order to truly be successful as a leader, you need solid emotional intelligence to make yourself available to others’ contribution. But you need, too, to trust yourself and follow your heart.

Here is why intuition is the ideal asset for leaders.


You can sense when things go off course


When you follow your intuition, you are in tune with experience and knowledge.

Intuition is the ideal asset for leaders because it gives them access to the voice of caution. Develop your intuition and you will spot anything that deviates from the course it was supposed to take. You will know when to abandon a particular plan, idea or even feel when someone is not 100% honest. You will develop the confidence to step into the unknown and embrace risk-taking with peace of mind.




You can view the bigger picture


Many successful execs and entrepreneurs advocate that intuition is the ideal asset for leaders. When you are in tune with your inner wisdom, you have clarity and self-mastery.

From that place of clarity, you can detach yourself from situations and reconnect to the bigger picture.

Result? No problem will escape your sharp thinking. And you will spot opportunities as early as they hit your radar.


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You can sense changes in your environment


Intuition is an essential leadership tool.

Intuitive leaders are incredibly sensitive to their environment. But this also translates into the wider world. By diligently observing themselves, intuitive leaders learn to observe others.

That’s why intuition is the ideal asset for leaders who like to keep a finger on the pulse of their people.


You make decisions more quickly and move forward


Intuitive leaders are well aware that you can think fast and slow.

They align thinking patterns to the problems they face. Complex issue? They undertake a deep analysis. Anything else? They make an early decision and accept that there’s a degree of uncertainty in everything you do.

Sure, you might make some mistakes along the way. But the exact reason why intuition is the ideal asset for a leader is it moves you forward. Never underestimate this.

Related: How to make impactful decisions.




You are generous and humble in your attitude


Intuition is the ideal asset for leaders when it comes to decision-making. But did you know intuitive people develop a greater sensitivity over time?

Intuitive leaders show extra care and attention towards those they lead. They have an open door policy and accommodate needs or ideas of their teams. They do have compassion and greater degrees of empathy. And they introduce vulnerability to their leadership.

But they are not pushovers! Intuitive leaders can be firm and fair when required.

Related: 8 signs for leaders to turn to emotional intelligence.


You are more receptive to new ideas


Intuition is the ideal asset for leaders because it maximises the benefits of curiosity.

Curiosity and intuition go hand in hand. If your mind is open enough to trust your inner voice, there’s no reason not to be open to any idea.

Following your intuition, you learn to focus better and access the clarity to examine ideas one after the other. You listen and don’t judge. You trust your inner voice to alert you when the right idea shows up.




You reduce the stress caused by an overthinking mind


Intuitive leaders can come across as a lake of tranquillity amongst type A overachievers. They usually create a working climate where agitation is in check and there’s mind space to tackle problems one after the other.

Their magic trick? Knowing intuition is their ideal asset.

Intuitive leaders know their thinking mind can turn into an enemy if not kept in check. They’re well aware that over-analysis won’t provide more answers to a problem.

So they pay extra care to cognitive overload, and balance thinking and doing.


You trust yourself and your inner voice


Imagine knowing that following your intuition was right, when the facts say otherwise.

You’d know when to act. Who to trust. What idea is the seed for more or the one that’s a waste of time. When to make a move and when to stay put.

How strong would your decisions be if you could access clarity instead of having to make the maths?

Well, that’s the reality of an intuitive leader.


A couple of years ago, I listened to a fascinating talk by Garry Kasparov. He was sharing that he was relying on intuition to make the right moves. In a game, he was able to recognise patterns without being able to articulate them.

That’s intuition at its best: unconsciously developed over time from past experiences and the knowledge gained from them.

So next time, tap into your inner leader. Keep in mind intuition is the ideal asset for leaders. And remember there are two ways to operate: follow your insight or follow your intuition.

Is one better than the other? No. It’s the combination of cognition and intuition that is powerful.

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