An ancient Eastern proverb warns, “When pride comes, so does disgrace; wisdom comes with the humble.” The art of leadership is the art of living, moment-by-moment, in humility. Humility is truly a state of mind—and the leader must understand that hubris and humility are diametrically opposed states of mind. At People First International, we are trying to help leaders focus on the wisest business philosophy so that they can enjoy the best results. The wisest leader is the one who is the most humble. And the humble leader is clothed in honor, for humility is the key that opens the gateway to honor.
Humility is the only lens that enables you to see the exalted worth, exalted dignity, and the incredible abilities of others. Humility gives us both the desire and the freedom to appreciate the gift of humanity given to others and to sincerely, wholeheartedly celebrate their accomplishments. Humility frees the mind from the destructive need to dominate, control and suppress others, and it eliminates every self-serving desire to impress, compare, compete, and prove anything to anyone.
Remembering these basic characteristics of humanity is key to discussing issues within your company. Many topics can become heated quickly because there is not enough sensitivity and mutual listening in the room. Keeping self-respect and the respect of others in the forefront of your mind will enable a successful conversation.
When one’s mind and actions are clothed in true humility, it is one of the most attractive and ennobling character traits that a human being could possess. This humble spirit always serves leaders well, and it will be welcomed, honored, and rewarded in any and all vocations and associations. Humility is one of the greatest multipliers for sustainable profitability.
Furthermore, humility is one of the greatest dispositions of the mind for producing the most profitable life that one could ever imagine. When leaders are humble in mind and deportment, then and only then are they fully prepared to seize upon every opportunity for their personal and professional development. Leaders are able to discuss issues with dignity and respect for others flawlessly and with little dispute. Humility of mind and behavior creates a willingness and openness to learn from every person we encounter in our various life experiences. In other words, humble people have disciplined their minds not to think of themselves more highly than they ought to think and enable dignity in all respects.