Humility – the Path to Leadership part 2
It May Not be What You Think
The concept of humility has gotten a bum rap over the last decades. People think showing humility will label them as a namby-pamby pushover, a weak wimp.
But hear me out, boys and girls, cause that ain’t true!
One of the most impressive examples of someone who showed complete humility was Jesus. (God becoming a man – you see what I mean?) You can’t get humbler than that. This same guy picked up some cords, fashioned a whip, overturned tables, and drove the money changers out of the Temple – on two different occasions.
Let’s say this, being humble Does Not mean taking on doormat status.
Excellent construction contractors show the ability not to be full of self-importance or pride but rather to be full of insight, encouragement, and inspiration. They realize that humility entails having enough confidence to admit they aren’t perfect, that they make mistakes, and that they don’t have all the answers.
Here’s an easy way to see it, think of humility as the opposite of arrogance.
It Can be Learned
This article by Scott Giroux states that humility can (and should) be learned.
Giroux offers five “anti-vices” that guide learning about and becoming humble across multiple facets of self. It is worth taking the time to read.
“Do not imagine that if you meet a really humble man he will be what most people call ‘humble’ nowadays: he will not be a sort of greasy, smarmy person, who is always telling you that, of course, he is nobody. Probably all you will think about him is that he seemed a cheerful, intelligent chap who took a real interest in what you said to him. If you do dislike him it will be because you feel a little envious of anyone who seems to enjoy life so easily. He will not be thinking about humility: he will not be thinking about himself at all.” – C.S. Lewis
“In reality, there is, perhaps, no one of our natural passions so hard to subdue as pride. Disguise it, struggle with it, beat it down, stifle it, mortify it as much as one pleases, it is still alive, and will every now and then peep out and show itself; you will see it, perhaps, often in this history; for, even if I could conceive that I had completely overcome it, I should probably be proud of my humility.” – Benjamin Franklin
“But effective leaders learn to modulate their styles between displays of incredible humility and unmistakable confidence.” – Jeffrey Eggers
“Humility is the first of the virtues,” Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. said, “for other people.” 😉
“Humility is self-confidence that runs far deeper than the tenuous self-confidence of the person who believes in himself because others look up to him.” – Robert C. Roberts
“God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble” (I Peter 5:5)
“Great leaders understand that the path to effective leadership is paved with humility, not pride.” – John Eades
“We live in a world where ego gets attention but modesty gets results. Where arrogance makes headlines but humility makes a difference.” – Bill Taylor, co-founder of Fast Company
“A pseudo leader always leaves you with a feeling of their greatness, while an authentic leader always leaves you with a feeling of your greatness.” – author unknown
It’s Rare and Valuable
Remaining humble through the rigors of being a part of the construction industry means being:
Full of Integrity
This post is the second in a 5-part series of articles concerning leadership. You can find the first here.
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