Humble Leadership


In a recent article in the Harvard Business Review, leaders were advised to pay more attention to their team’s assets and less to their own power within the organization.

“By focusing too much on control and end goals, and not enough on their people, leaders are making it more difficult to achieve their own desired outcomes,” the piece said.

What’s the better alternative? Empowering employees and encouraging their work.

To do this, leaders should take a more personal approach, acting as a conduit to professional growth and providing support for their team when necessary.

In short? Be humble. Instead of assuming the role of the almighty boss, create an office culture that fosters communication and learning. Acknowledge, both in your actions and your words, that you aren’t all-knowing, and that the team is full of strong workers, each with their own set of skills and expertise.

Not only does this elicit a feeling of mutual respect between leader and his/her staff, it also gives staff the much-needed space to be creative and own their work.

When a company head in China implemented this “people-first” method, he met with his employees in small groups to find out how he could help make the company better. These conversations led to big ideas the leader had never even considered, and customer satisfaction rose by 54%.

Try adding a little humility into your leadership routine. The results might surprise you.

For more on humble leadership, read “How Humble Leadership Really Works,” by Dan Cable, in the Harvard Business Review.