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The Power to See Ourselves

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The text “The Power to see Ourselves” shows a critical breakdown of the importance of self-image and how managers change their self-concept and how they can develop and grow by passing through this process. When I read the text, there were many passages, in which I started thinking about how I fit to these statements and how I see myself in relation to these specific passages. Right at the outset, when the author clarifies his point – how we see ourselves and how we behave because of that – with the instances of two executives, I thought about the importance of the way how you make your point to other people. People will memorize many of your words and will form an opinion about you. If you ask me it is very important that you are confident concerning your behavior because only in this case you will be passed for confident by other people. That’s why I agree with the author that self-image is really important concerning the development of any person, especially managers. When I read the passage I also thought about the importance of thinking about the consequences of your behavior. Before a manager talks to his employees he should think about possible alternatives of their behavioral reaction on his speech. Only in that case he can make sure that they react in that way he wants them to react.

Therefore he needs to know how they see him and furthermore he has to have a realistic self-image. That’s why I also agree with the author in that point, but I think he should have mentioned the thoughts about the consequences in detail. In addition I think the author is right concerning the conflict of self-concept. If I cogitate about situations in my life I sometimes victimized other people when I was in an unsatisfactory phase. In other words I took my mood out on them. Nevertheless I felt sad about that afterwards and changed my behavior and so my self-concept. An important point to me is self-expectation. In my opinion a person who has really high self-expectations will always try hard, but he might fail in many points. First of all he is never complete satisfied about his results. Second his memory will be charged and blocked in the case he realizes that he won´t be able to reach his goal. On the other hand I think that the argument of communication is not mentioned enough in the text. With communication many problems can be solved and it helps every manager to develop and grow.

For example a good employee – executive – relation can help both of them to change their self-image and to adapt it to the way how they see each other. Altogether I agree with the author´s general idea. Nevertheless I have to add that I think he neglects the importance of knowledge and skills of a manager. Change in behavior is vital for managers because they are always in different situations and they don’t have a monotonous work but they also need to have the right skills to be able to growth. So he should have talked more about individuals and their ability to be a manager. Last but not least I don’t think that motivation is the only and main point to encourage a change in behavior. In recent times external circumstances change the whole time and so people don’t stand still. They are changed because of their environment. New sparked question:

The topic is approached in general, but the writer does not write about the individual differences. Every human is different. In consequence he/she emerges different reactions in the same situations and so shows another change of behavior. What is about these individual differences? What about the feedback you got from other people? The writer mostly concentrates on insights by myself but does not mention much about the feedback you get from other people.


Brouwer, P. J. (1964). The Power to See Ourselves. Harvard Business Review, Vol. 42 No. 6, pp. 156-165.

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