“Every man must decide whether he will walk in the light of creative altruism or in the darkness of destructive selfishness.” ~ Martin Luther King Jr
In a previous blog post of mine, I reflected on what it takes to be successful and how harnessing a sense of self-awareness could have a significant impact on your life. Similar to that theory is the power of humility, especially amongst leaders. As a leader in any profession, exercising humility can help cultivate an inclusive environment which, in turn, can pay dividends in your overall success.
When you think about a valued leader of yours, and the characteristics they embody, they’re more often than not a humble being. Leaders who exercise humility tend to foster a positive workplace culture, which is of value to their employees. In a catalyst study which analyzed leadership factors that most commonly contributed to an altruistic work environment, humility was one of the top four answers amongst employees.
Leaders who practice humility are perceived as relatable and thus more approachable to their employees. A humble leader acknowledges their shortcomings and welcomes the opinion of others. An admirable attribute of these leaders is their willingness to learn. Those who exercise humility recognize their imperfections and appreciate the opportunity to learn and grow. They tend to welcome an open dialect, which initiates a more creative environment. It’s through that understanding and contribution of opinions, that an inclusive environment is promoted.
Humble leaders are also able to establish more of a rapport with their employees. Once an inclusive environment is established, employees will feel more confident in expressing opinions and concerns. A leader who demonstrates altruistic behaviors will encourage their employees to go above and beyond what is expected of them. By fostering that relationship, and making employees feel included in the grander scheme of things, they’re prone to be more productive.
Exercising humility and demonstrating selfless behavior is an admirable quality in any scenario. While some may interpret your humble demeanor as a sign of weakness, it takes a great deal of strength and courage to uphold such a quality in trying situations. Those who exhibit traits of humility are very attentive to the needs of others and value what each individual brings to the table. Practice applying some of these tactics in both your professional and personal life and rest assured, you’ll see a positive return.