A sense of humour is part of the art of leadership, of getting along with people, of getting things done.
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Humility is not a word that comes to mind when thinking of some of the leaders of our time, and yet humility in CEOs leads to higher-performing leadership teams, increased collaboration and cooperation, and flexibility in developing strategies (according to a survey of 105 tech firms published in the Journal of Management). Humility was also identified by Jim Collins in his seminal book, ‘Good to Great’ as a common trait of successful CEOs.
So, what is humility?
“Humility is not thinking less of yourself; it’s thinking of yourself less” C S Lewis.
“We must not confuse humility with false modesty or servility” Paulo Coelho.
“Pride makes us artificial and humility makes us real” Thomas Merton.
How can I recruit for humility? • Do they credit others? • Do they admit mistakes? • Do they accept constructive feedback? • Do they seek to overcome their weaknesses? • Do they help others?
Great leadership begins with quiet confidence, humility and a focus on others.
Here is a checklist to rate yourself on 12 leadership attributes. How do you score?
I saw this quote in a blog and it stuck with me through the day…
“I don’t want to be a product of my environment. I want my environment to be a product of me.” Frank Costello in the movie ‘The Departed’
Then I saw this on a poster in a shop window…
“Once you make a decision, the universe conspires to make it happen.” Ralph Waldo Emerson
Then I heard this in a TV programme…
Father to daughter, “We either define our fate, or we are defined by it.”
Once is happenstance, twice is a coincidence, three times?
I came up with my own version…
“If we don’t design our fate, then we give fate the right to design us.”
Is that the message?
Most of us could be far better listeners than we are… me included 🙂
We speak with passion and want to be heard. Do we listen with passion when others want to be heard?
When was the last time you listened with passion?
Now that you have thought of a time, what were you doing that made your listening passionate?
How do you do ‘listening with passion’?
Notice how you listen to someone this week when they are speaking passionately.
I hear it all the time… “I’m so busy!”
But busy is a state of mind. It is the frantic and sometimes jumbled thoughts whirling in our head about all the things on our list that we think we must do. That mess of thoughts causes stress, and paradoxically, detracts from our ability to tackle the list.
Are you busy? Or do you just have a lot on right now, and that’s OK?
Take a moment and say to yourself, “I’m not busy, I just have a list with quite a few things to do, so I better get on and do one of them.”
How does that feel? Notice how the feeling changes as you change your thoughts about the situation. We live in whatever feeling is created by our thinking.
It can be useful to have tools and methods to help structure our thinking, so here are 10 tips for your to-do list.
Einstein is reputed to have said, “No problem can be solved by the same kind of thinking that created it.”
That’s a bit disheartening. Does that mean we can’t solve our problems?
We think, and enjoy the fruits of our thinking, but if that fruit is a problem, what then?
Einstein tells us that the one place we can’t find the answer to our problems is inside our own thinking – in what we already think, and what we already think we know.
He is not telling us what to think, but he does give us a good idea of what is not worth thinking. We need difference, not sameness. We need thinking beyond our own boundaries. How do we do that?
The more we sequester ourselves away from others ‘not like us’, the less likely we are to be exposed to thinking unlike our own, and therefore to solutions to our own problems.
This week spend some time with someone ‘not like you’ and, with simple non-judgemental curiosity, listen to their view of the world.
When reflecting on the conversation ask yourself, “What must be true for them to think that way?” and conversely, “What must be true for me to think my way?”
Here’s a question… Is your truth any more valid than theirs? Why?
This topic provides an overview of 20 of the most common management tools and models as well as an outline on how to use them. Plus brief details of 45 or so other models.
Discover how to get better results for you and your team: 50 Essential Tips for Managers