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Thursday, December 7, 2023

Staying humble is key leadership trait for non-stop business growth

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The growth of your business can stop once your humility is lost. This article explains why being and staying humble is key for non-stop business growth.

As the owner of a company or a senior manager, you have a lot to be proud of. If you’re a little conceited, you might be forgiven. You will be rewarded, though, if you are not. If you show that you are not above others, more people will admire you and become an even more connected leader – preferably while keeping your humility. Humility is a leadership trait that you have to learn if you don’t already have it.

Never think that you have reached the top or know everything you need to know. Once you do that the chances are great that somebody else will catch up with and pass you on the road to success. And even after you have achieved success you should always remain humble.

You can understand this very well from the children’s story, called “The Tortoise and the Hare.” 

In that classic Aesop fable, the hare mocks the tortoise for being too slow before agreeing to a race. Of course, the hare establishes an early lead, and he becomes so convinced that he is going to win that he pauses to snooze. Meanwhile, the turtle keeps moving forward, putting in steady, persistent effort, and eventually wins the race. With his natural proclivity for speed, the hare became arrogant. He felt humiliated by the tortoise’s sluggish progress because he refused to be humbled.

Senior leadership roles in company are the easiest places to get comfortable — even arrogant. You don’t have to be as blatantly haughty as the hare, kicking your feet up on the grass as the competition goes on around you. However, if you are not working deliberately and regularly to improve because you believe you or your company are invincible, the final outcomes will be the same. You will eventually lose.

The truth is that when you perform leadership well, you understand that it is difficult to ever genuinely “make it.” There is always something to better, something to learn, or a question to ask.

CEOs and entrepreneurs are frequently uncontrolled – their performance isn’t rigorously examined, let alone formally reviewed. You should always look inward to identify areas for improvement, as they are all intrinsically linked to the success of your company and its people. As a leader, keeping humble is the only way to grow and improve year after year.

If you are humble you will always enjoy business growth, no matter how slow it is. The converse is arrogance, which is characterised by stagnation and retreat. Those are the only two positions in business and life.

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