Home > Leadership, Ramblings > Why we need humility in leadership

Why we need humility in leadership

October 20, 2009 Leave a comment Go to comments

battle of chancelFascinating post by Michael Hyatt about a lecture he heard from Malcolm Gladwell, titled, “The Mistakes Experts Make.”   Hyatt says that Gladwell used the battle of Chancelorsville in the American Civil War, as his illustration of how overconfidence (and a corresponding lack of humility) can bring about devastating consequences.  The picture above is of the battlefield. I assume from the same lecture of Gladwell, that Hyatt shares the following three ways leaders can avoid becoming overly confident

  1. Listen to those around us. We cannot afford to create a culture that is not safe for dissent. Our people need to feel the freedom to disagree with us and tell us the truth.
  2. Plan for contingencies. We might be right. We might be wrong. We need to accept this and create a plan A and a plan B. We can’t afford to assume that our plans are infallible.
  3. Enlist the help of our team. . . . When the organization gets bigger than about 150 people (according to Gladwell) our leadership has to change. It must become a more collective, collaborative effort.

Final question from Michael Hyatt: What specific actions are you taking to remain humble as a leader?

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