Today, there is no discussion about leadership, which in one form or another does not mention modesty as a key quality that a modern boss should possess.
This topic is covered in books, publications, and conferences around the world. However, many leaders refuse to accept this concept, at least as far as their work is concerned. These same leaders often cross the line between confidence and arrogance.
In my work as a professional coach, I have the privilege of working with a wide range of leaders from all levels of government. Here is what they tell me about modesty and arrogance:
Modesty is not even in the top 10 of the most important qualities that great leaders possess
This is a point I have heard from many leaders. They usually say something like, “If we’re talking about the ten most important leadership skills, no one thinks of modesty.” My answer is usually that even though they don’t think about the word, leaders think about the things it represents. The manager shows modesty when he listens to his employees and cares for their well-being. Being modest also means putting yourself in the shoes of others – something that many people don’t know how or don’t want to do. Arrogance, on the other hand, is characterized by the rewriting of foreign achievements and the constant thirst for power and recognition.
Modesty is a form of weakness
One of the main reasons many leaders avoid modesty is the idea that they may look weak in this way. After all, no one wants to be perceived by others as weak. It is this fear that causes arrogant leaders to put themselves and their personal needs before the goals of the company and the common good. On the other hand, leaders who are not afraid to show modesty make a focused effort to support and inspire others. They teach them everything I know, hoping that one day their employees will surpass what they have achieved.
Modesty has a bad reputation
The traditional way of thinking in the world of business dictates that one cannot be both humble and confident. The idea is that competition between companies, teams, and individuals do not leave room for demonstrations of modesty. The truth is that modesty cannot be separated from confidence. Indeed, self-confident leaders do not feel the need to constantly emphasize their successes or belittle other people’s achievements. Exactly the opposite. True, confident leaders put their employees first and rejoice in their every success.
After all, no one likes arrogant leaders. Even if they give the impression of determination and strength, they rarely earn the sincere respect of others.